Charity football match held in memory of popular mother after death aged 54

The family and friends of a popular lollipop lady who died of cancer have raised over £3,000 for the hospice who looked after her by hosting a charity football match.

Raising money for Compton Care: prison staff and family members of Tracey Martin, including (front) Daisy Grice and Chris Grice.
Raising money for Compton Care: prison staff and family members of Tracey Martin, including (front) Daisy Grice and Chris Grice.

Tracey Martin's loved ones were so grateful for the dedicated care that Compton Care gave her that they decided to give something back.

The family hosted a football match at Bilbrook Junior Football Club on Saturday, April 9 with all proceeds going to the hospice.

Tracey, from the Merryhill area of Wolverhampton, was just a few days away from her 55th birthday when she died two years ago.

Her son-in-law, Chris Grice, rallied together his colleagues at Brinsford Prison to play as a team against the family, and the team of prison officers triumphed over the family team with seven goals to two.

Tracey's daughter, Daisy Grice, laughed: "We knew we'd lose. The prison team is a really good team."

Guests at the match also enjoyed a bouncy castle, face painting, a tombola, and a disco with a DJ, while refreshments included a candy floss machine, hot food, and a slush puppy machine.

Raising money for Compton Care, relatives of Tracey Martin, from left: daughter Daisy Grice, husband Mervyn Martin, and son-in-law Chris Grice, get ready for a charity football game, at Bilbrook Junior Football Club.

Daisy and her family are grateful for the support of local businesses who sponsored the match which enabled all of the activities to take place.

These include Chip Stop on Springhill Lane, Unity on Trysull Road, Sincerity on Trysull Road, and Marston's Brewery.

Carlina and Dave Maydew from Bilbrook Junior Football Club also donated the clubhouse and pitch for the day so the charity event could take place.

Meanwhile Daisy's sisters Amy and Kerry paid for all the sweets and made them into pick and mix bags, Geraldine organised the tombola stall and all of the sisters raised money from work colleagues.

With the help of these sponsors, Daisy and her family raised around £3,200 for Compton Care.

Tracey with her four daughters. From left to right: Geraldine Ayres, Kerry Cadman, Amy Penman, Tracey Martin, and Daisy Grice.

Daisy added: "It was something we wanted to do years ago when my mom was still here, but then Covid happened.

"Compton Care were amazing with my mom, you couldn't fault their end of life care."

Tracey Martin had been a lollipop lady outside Woodfield Primary School in Penn and dismissed her symptoms as just a cold from being out in the elements.

After six months of tests, during which time it was thought Tracey had a chest infection, doctors told Tracey that she had stage-four lung cancer.

She also had brain tumours, which were successfully treated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, who Daisy said were "absolutely amazing".

Tracey Martin with husband Mervyn Martin

However, Tracey's treatment was affected when the pandemic hit, and she died in May 2020.

Daisy said: "My mom wanted to be at home with loved ones and Compton completely took over her care. They provided us with a hospital bed, with oxygen, they provided everything.

"At the height of the pandemic they were still here every day. They washed and changed her twice a day.

"There was always someone there 24 hours a day on the phone. They were amazing, absolutely amazing.

"So we wanted to give something back because they are a charity and there are so many stories like ours."

Compton Care offers free clinical, practical and emotional care to people living with or caring for someone with an incurable condition.

Their services include community and inpatient care, counselling, physiotherapy, art therapy, and bereavement care.

To donate, go to comptoncare.org.uk/support-us/waystodonate. For clinical enquiries, call 01902 774570.

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