Dave Munn, 54 years old from Worthing, is taking on a Wing Walk in memory of his granddaughter, Violet, who was stillborn in 2015.
In August 2022, Dave will be taking on a challenge of a lifetime as the Wing Walk will involve breath-taking 130mph top speeds and stunning views – whilst strapped to a plane!
Dave has decided to take on the challenge to raise funds for his local children’s hospice, Chestnut Tree House. “I’ve always wanted to do a Wing Walk, and this is the perfect opportunity to give back to Chestnut Tree House, after all they have done for Violet and our family,” says Dave.
Chestnut Tree House cares for children with life-shortening conditions and their families in Sussex and South East Hampshire.
It costs over £4.6 million each year to provide all Chestnut Tree House’s specialist care services. Families are never charged for their care and only a small percentage of the cost of care is funded by central government. So, it relies heavily on the generosity, help and support of the local community.
In 2015, Dave’s daughter, Dani, found out she was pregnant with Violet. “I was so excited to be a first-time mum,” said Dani. “I couldn’t help but buy baby items. I would dream of our first home. The gender of our child. If we'd be early or late. I was due just after New Year’s, such an exciting time to expect a baby.”
At her 12-week scan, concerns were raised as Violet’s nuchal fold measured abnormally high. “I was sent for further testing and at six months, it confirmed that Violet had severe complications that were drastically restricting the growth of her rib cage. We were told that she would never be able to breathe and that she had a 5% chance of survival.
“I remember sitting in the consultant's chair. Time stood still. I forgot to breathe. The air was taken right out of my lungs and my world swept from beneath my feet. The consultants advised that I should end the pregnancy as Violet should have been an early miscarriage – but she was a fighter.”
At this difficult time, the family was introduced to Chestnut Tree House who supported Dani through her pregnancy. “The Chestnut Tree House team met us at the hospital for appointments, offered help with transport, and showed us the bereavement suite where we could take Violet when she had passed.”
At 34 weeks, on 9 November 2015 at 1:19am, Violet Nora Denholm-Munn was born sleeping. The family took her to Chestnut Tree House, where they spent three precious days with her before they said goodbye.
“Those three days were a blessing that I have always been so grateful for. We spent the time at Chestnut Tree House, they fed and gave us somewhere to sleep so we could be close to Violet. We were able to spend time with our daughter and they helped us take prints of her hands and feet, arrange a funeral, and the team was there 24/7 to care for us.”
“Even now, years later, we go back to their memory garden and take a quiet moment to remember our daughter. Twice a year they also open their doors for bereaved families to come and remember their children together.
“Without this beautiful charity, we would not have had half the support we did. They will always have a special place in our hearts.”
To support Dave’s Wing Walk, please visit www.justgiving.com/dave-munn2
Speaking about her Dad’s Wing Walk, Dani said, “I just want to say big thank you to my Dad for remembering his granddaughter so beautifully.”