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Heartache for family as mum loses daughter and husband in the space of just 24 hours

PUBLISHED: 08:29 04 August 2020 | UPDATED: 16:41 04 August 2020

The family of Michael and Emma Pottle have paid tribute to the remarkable pair after they died within 24 hours of each other. Picture: Lisa Pottle

The family of Michael and Emma Pottle have paid tribute to the remarkable pair after they died within 24 hours of each other. Picture: Lisa Pottle

Archant

A woman has been rocked by the loss of her daughter and husband in the space of 24 hours, leaving her three-month-old grandson without a mum.

Emma Pottle, pictured in 2012 ahead of receiving an award from college. Picture: Denise BradleyEmma Pottle, pictured in 2012 ahead of receiving an award from college. Picture: Denise Bradley

Lisa Pottle, from Beecheno Road, Norwich, was by her 26-year-old daughter, Emma’s, side when she died at Addenbrooke’s Hospital on July 29, and was left heartbroken further when her husband of 23-years, Michael, died from lung cancer a day later.

Emma Pottle had given birth to her first child, a boy called MJ, on May 9 - something she thought could never happen after being treated for thyroid cancer as a teenager.

Mrs Pottle said: “I feel grateful and privileged for knowing them and how brave and remarkable the pair of them were for fighting for as hard and as long as they did.”

A Go Fund Me page has been set up by friends to help the family towards funeral costs and is £500 away from its £2,000 target.

Miss Pottle was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2012 and underwent several operations, but still continued her studies in health and social care at Norwich City College where she received the Governors’ Award for Outstanding Student Achievement.

After qualifying she started work at the Vauxhall Centre in Norwich, where she supported people with disabilities.

The family was delighted when she announced she was pregnant.

Mrs Pottle said: “She had been wanting to be a mum for so long. Because she had cancer she didn’t think she was able to have a baby.

“The day she found out she was pregnant she was so excited.

“She was proud to be a mum and so proud of that little boy.

“We will talk to him about his mum every single day and will continue to do that.”

Mrs Pottle was getting ready for bed when she received a call at around 9.30pm on July 24 from her daughter’s friend saying she was unwell.

She said: “Her friend was with her and told me Emma wasn’t very well and there were paramedics and they wanted to talk to me about her medical history to get an idea what to say to the doctors when they arrived.

“The worst part of the phone call is I could her my daughter in the background, I could hear her screaming and shouting. She was in pain and that was the last I heard from her.”

Miss Pottle was taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, but due to coronavirus restrictions her mum could not be by her side straight away.

At around midnight Mrs Pottle received a call from staff asking her to come to the hospital as her daughter’s condition had deteriorated.

She ordered a taxi and was taken to the hospital, where Miss Pottle died five days later.

Mrs Pottle said staff believe her daughter had a massive seizure which caused her brain to swell.

Mrs Pottle said: “She was a very friendly person.

“She would do anything for anybody, if she could, she would help someone.

“Everyone she came into contact with absolutely loved her - no-one had a bad word to say about her.”

The grandmother-of-five suffered further loss when her husband Michael died after a year long battle with lung cancer.

The couple have been together 25 years and married for 23 years.

They lived across the road from each other, brought together when Mr Pottle’s mother told his future wife, who was sitting on her door step, to put the kettle on as he was joining her for coffee.

The 54-year-old underwent treatment for the cancer but was taken to hospital on February 12. He was transferred to a care home five days later.

The family were still able to see him at a distance during the lockdown, but visiting times were limited to 20 minutes.

Mrs Pottle, said: “I had been up and down to Addenbrookes during the week and I was feeling a bit drained.

“The last time I saw him was a few hours before he passed away.

“The life I had with him, everybody has ups and downs, but it all down to his mum that I have been able to share all of my adult life with this man who would have done anything for anyone.

“He passed away 25 hours and 46 minutes after my daughter.”

The family has been receiving support from relatives, friends and neighbours, with Miss Pottle’s baby currently being looked after by a family member.

She added: “We really appreciate the support and help we are getting and grateful for it.”

Visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/987nb-family to donate to the Go Fund Me page.


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