1997 for The Hurrell Family
The Hurrell Family first stayed at Ronald McDonald House Glasgow in 1997. Their eldest daughter, Stephanie was rushed to the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Yorkhill. Stephanie was just five weeks old! Angela recalls how she felt on that very first night at the House “I have never been so scared in my life between Stephanie being so ill and staying in a house full of strangers” a sentiment no doubt felt by numerous families staying at Ronald McDonald House Glasgow for the first time.
However, Angela went on to say “How WRONG was I. After a few days, when we were in the House at mealtimes and at night, you start talking to other parents and they are not strangers – they are the same as you with the same worries with a sick child. It does make a huge difference having a TV lounge and being able to talk to other parents – you don’t feel so alone”.
On their first stay at the House the family stayed for 5 months. This was to be the start of numerous visits spanning 16 years. In 2014 the family had the awful ordeal of having two visits to hospital. First with eldest daughter Stephanie being rushed in for life saving treatment. Angela recalls “It was such a worrying time as they only gave Stephanie two weeks to live”. Stephanie fought hard though and came through her heart surgery really well.
But just five weeks later their younger daughter, Jacqueline was taken to the same hospital for open heart surgery! Thankfully following in her big sisters’ steps, recovering well and being able to go home quickly.
Proud Mum & Dad
Stephanie went on to become a flag bearer at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, as well as Member of the Scottish Youth Parliament for Inverclyde!! Not to mention winning her Saltire Award for volunteering. Angela told us “I am just so proud of my girls achievements… this has only been possible with the support of Ronald McDonald House Glasgow because being so close to the hospital is vital but as you know, you need to recharge your batteries too”.
From Yorkhill to Govan
In 2015 Ronald McDonald House moved location when the Royal Hospital for Children, Glasgow was built in Govan. The doors opened on 10 June 2015, with current families moving from Yorkhill to Govan. The extra capacity at the new House enabled new families to stay too.
The Hurrell family have stayed at both Houses. On Jacqueline’s last visit to the children’s hospital, she even got to meet the Queen, during a Royal visit! Jacqueline especially liked the police sniffer dog that was in her room prior to the Queen arriving!!
The Hurrell girls leave the children’s hospital
Angela recalls the feelings around her daughter moving on from the children’s hospital into adult services “We knew we were going to miss all of the staff and volunteers at Ronald McDonald House Glasgow. You had become more like friends to us. It was very bittersweet – no more surgery for a while but I was going to miss you all so much, you had been a huge part of our lives for as long as I could remember”.
The Hurrell Family have been active supporters of the House. Taking opportunities to fundraise for the House and the hospital and helping many more children and families in need. For the 20th Anniversary the family fundraised by wearing red. A simple idea but one that raised awareness as well as money for the Charity.
The news none of us wanted to hear
In 2020 came the devastating news from Angela. With a heavy heart she passed on the awful news that her beautiful daughter Stephanie had passed away. Everyone at the House felt their pain. Stephanie had become a friend to us all. With her positive and warm personality, you could not help but be drawn to her. Understandably the family are totally heartbroken, and we felt at a loss only being able to pass on our heartfelt sympathies.
Angela finished with a special message to the House team “It has been a privilege to stay in the old and the fabulous new House. I really can’t thank you enough for not only letting us stay but for just listening and caring when we needed you most and for that we will be forever grateful. So, here’s to the next 25 years of Ronald McDonald House Glasgow, a real home from home”.
Everyone here at Ronald McDonald House Glasgow passes on their warmest wishes and thanks to the Hurrell Family. You were a delight to be around when you stayed at the House and we miss you all too!
We welcome anyone reading this to make a donation to the Charity. Your support keeps the doors open to more families, just like the Hurrell’s. You enable parents and carers to spend more time with their children. You enable children to spend more time with the special people in their lives too. We all know that time is priceless – so thank you so much for supporting Ronald McDonald House Glasgow.Back to Stories