Little Rae’s race to help bring her papa home

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Little Rae Blair from Falkirk has signed up to take part in the Kids’ Kilometre at the Edinburgh Marathon Festival for a very special reason.

The four-year-old’s great-grandfather Billy Kay, or Papa G as she affectionately calls him, is currently in hospital after suffering a serious stroke which left him unable to walk.

Billy (76), from Loanhead, suffered the stroke in December last year and since then has been under the care of NHS Scotland at both the Royal Infirmary and Astley Ainsle rehabilitation unit.

His family are looking forward to the day they can bring him home and Rae is hopeful she will be able to give her Papa G cuddles at home sometime in the future, with the continued help of NHS professionals plus assistance from the Chest Heart and Stroke Scotland (CHSS) charity.

As well as signing up for the Kids’ Kilometre on Saturday, Rae’s mum Claire and gran Maureen have organised further fundraisers for CHSS including braving the Loch Ness Beast Race.

Claire said: “We were all absolutely devastated when my papa suffered his stroke. It breaks my heart that he can’t come home yet.

“My granny is partially blind and suffers from her own health issues and my papa has always been the strong one who looks after her and everyone.

“He’s our rock and we all miss him so much.”

Rae added: “I miss my Papa G so much. I want him to come home. I want to run really fast for him and give him a big hug after!”

Billy said he was “so proud” of Rae and the whole family for helping to raise money for CHSS.

“Seeing Rae so determined and excited has been such a motivator for me, she’s an inspiration and so full of life,” he added.

Jane-Claire Judson, chief executive at CHSS said: “Helping people live life to the full after a stroke is what we do.

“It is so inspiring to see the family, led by Rae, one of our youngest fundraising heroes, rallying together and doing what they can to help get Billy home.”

Rae will race in the Kids’ Kilometre on Saturday, May 25. To support her visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/billyswarriors