Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Charity Tuesday: Angela set to walk in memory of her brother

Angela Crook, ICT Business Analyst at Essex County Fire and Rescue Service, will be walking 10 miles in her brother Steve's memory on Saturday 24 October, as part of the Campaign Against Living Miserably's (CALM) The Lost Hours Walk.

On 10 October 2009, Angela's younger brother Steve (pictured with Angela's daughter Amber) took his own life, aged 37. No-one had any idea Steve was struggling.

As well as trying to raise £500 for the charity, she wants to encourage anyone who is struggling to let someone know.

She said: "It came like a bolt out of the blue. Whatever issues and problems he was going through weren't visible to anybody.

"He had probably been struggling for quite a while but to this day we haven't found anyone who knew what was wrong.

"There will be things that will haunt me for the rest of my life. I rarely talk about what happened but I thought to myself; I need to start doing my bit.

"There will be other people who, like me, had no idea their loved ones were struggling."

Angela has urged anyone who is struggling to talk to someone or, if they can't face having a conversation, write down their feelings. 

She said: "Don't hide your feelings. I know it can be difficult, particularly with our British 'stiff upper lip'.

"But you're only one human being, you only have one set of shoulders and you can't bear the burden of everything by yourself.

"If you can't speak, then write a letter or find some way of letting someone know - no-one should be alone with all the different ways we can communicate today.

"If my brother had reached out to someone, he might still be here."

Angela will be joined by her partner Martin and their daughters Maia and Amber on the walk.

The route, near their home in Maldon, will have a very personal meaning, taking in the "wonderful walks and nature trails" locally and that hold special memories.

Angela is no stranger to fundraising. She helped to raise hundreds of pounds for Macmillan while she was going through cancer treatment and also donates to CALM, Essex Air Ambulance and The Fire Fighters Charity.

Let's help Angela to reach her £500 target. To donate, visit her fundraising page.

What is The Lost Hours Walk?

The Lost Hours Walk is traditionally held on the evening of 24 October. The clocks go back at 2am on 25 October, giving the walk its name.

However, the main event in London has been cancelled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic so fundraisers have been encouraged to organise their own routes in October and November.

Fundraisers are invited to sign up and plan their own The Lost Hours Walk, which can be any distance and in any location.

CALM says:

On average, 125 people take their own lives every week in the UK

75% of people who take their own lives are not known to mental health services or have not been in touch with mental health services within the last year.

135 people are directly affected by every suicide.

What support is available?

CALM runs a free, anonymous and confidential helpline and webchat are there for anyone who needs support. They’re open from 5pm-midnight every day. You can also call 0800 58 58 58.

If someone is in immediate danger they should go to A&E or dial 999 for the Ambulance Service.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, use the 24-hour crisis line - dial 111 and select option 2 for mental health crisis. You will be connected to trained staff who can provide timely and appropriate support and advice.

Page last updated 15 September, 2020.

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