Luton man runs in memory of sister and niece

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A man who tragically lost his sister while she was pregnant with her first child is running the Amsterdam Marathon in her memory.

Darryl Lyle, 30, wants to raise awareness for the National Brain Appeal following the sudden death of his younger sister Rochelle, 28, in March this year.

Mr Lyle said: “Although Rochelle had suffered from migraines previously, her death came as a complete shock to everyone because she was not unwell at the time of her passing.”

Rochelle’s baby girl Imaani was delivered 13 weeks early and unfortunately suffered from a lack of oxygen.

After six weeks, baby Imaani sadly also lost her fight for life and died as a result of multiple brain injuries.

The neurosurgeon concluded that Rochelle had died from a brain injury, however an inquest is to be held to determine whether more could have been done during the week she was in hospital up until her death.

Darryl said: “It has been a traumatic and life changing few months, I was and still am heartbroken and confused.

“It was always a bucket list goal of mine to complete a marathon, and to help get over what’s happened it has really been my therapy. It was the best way for me to handle it.”

Darryl has been joined by friends during his daily runs in preparation for the marathon and already, nearly £2,000 has been raised for the National Brain Appeal. Around 30 friends and family will travel to Amsterdam to support him in October.

Psychology graduate Rochelle was described as the life and soul of the family

Darryl added: “My sister was two years younger but in reality, we were just like twins and she shared in everything I’ve done since I was young.

“She was very family-oriented, always very caring and considerate. It’s still hard for all of us to take.

“I just hope that if there’s a way for people to spot signals early on, it can prevent death or serious injury. My sister had migraines but we never knew that could be a symptom of something so serious.”

Theresa Dauncey, Chief Executive of The National Brain Appeal charity said: “Our hearts go out to Darryl Lyle and his family for the devastating loss of his sister Rochelle and her baby.

“We wish him the very best of luck for the Amsterdam Marathon next month.

“He has already raised an incredible amount of money for The National Brain Appeal for neurological research. We are very grateful to him and to everyone who has supported him so far.”

Darryl added: “It’s a tremendous challenge and one that will most certainly push me to the limit!

“The experience will be even better knowing that I will have been able to raise money towards important research that will help prevent anyone from going through the struggle my family and I have had to endure.”

The Amsterdam Marathon takes place on October 15.

> To sponsor Darryl, please visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Darryl-Lyle.