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Dad would have been so proud of brave Ellie after abseiling down Bell Tower at Trafford Centre
WHEN brave Ellie Jackson took her first step over the sheer edge of the Bell Tower at the Trafford Centre to abseil almost 200 feet, it was her dad who was uppermost in her thoughts.
Despite admitting to being terrified of heights, the 13-year-old from Rowan Close in Haresfinch, was determined to take part, just one month after her dad Paul, a joiner, died from cancer, aged just 42.
Proud mum Jane, 42, said that thanks to her sky high efforts the Upholland High pupil has raised £3,000 for Willowbrook Hospice.
She explained: “Ellie decided to do it while her dad was in Willowbrook, where he was for five weeks until he died. She could have backed out, but she was determined to carry on.
“I’m not sure I could have done it. I’m so proud of her because she was the only child doing it and she’s frightened of heights. I think she’s proud of herself as well.
“Ellie wrote to a lot of companies for sponsorship, admitting she was terrified.
“My heart was in my mouth, when I watched her do it. She gave me a wave from the top, and then just did it. She said she wants to do a sky dive next, but I said no way.
“Paul wanted to do a skydive a couple of years ago, but couldn’t do it because of his health. Ellie asked me if she could do it, but I said she was too young, so she said ‘ok, I’ll do the abseil instead.’ I think she’s going to be a little daredevil.”
Jane said that Paul had fought cancer for 3½ years. She said initially he underwent an emergency operation in his bowel and was clear for 18 months, before it returned in his lymph nodes.
“I thought Ellie would be more upset than her little sister Millie. But she’s been really strong. She puts all her effort into her schoolwork. Millie’s only seven and she doesn’t seem to understand.
“We have had a lot of support from Millie’s school St Aiden’s in Billinge and from Willowbrook.”
The family have thanked Mitie, who raised £1,150 and Foundrygate Windows who weighed in with a £800 sponsoriship for Ellie.