A GIRL who died just months before her first birthday has inspired a fundraising bid in aid of the hospice that cared for her.

Parents of North Swindon baby Aliza-May Norton, who suffered from rare genetic disorder Edwards syndrome, said the girl’s smile lit up the room.

And this weekend, Aliza-May’s father and 13 family friends will take on the Tough Mudder race to raise cash for Oxford hospice Helen & Douglas House.

Mum Emma said: “Helen House and the team made us realise life was normal, regardless of having a life-limited child."

“Helen House showed us things we didn’t know and taught us experiences can still be the same but will have to be ventured a different way.”

Born in June last year, Aliza-May spent her first weeks in the Special Care Baby Unit. Diagnosed with Edwards syndrome, which can cause heart defects, Aliza-May was given just three weeks to live.

The girl’s smile captured the hearts of her family and GWH staff alike. Emma said: “The nurses used to say, ‘We aren’t usually allowed to fall in love with patients.’” But they did.

She added: “Aliza-May used to be smiling all the time, an ear-to-ear smile. It would melt your heart. If you felt any pain in your heart you only had to look at her and it would all go away. She made everyday better.

“She was beautiful.”

Aliza-May was supported by Helen House, the charity’s hospice for younger children, before she was admitted to hospital for the final time. Emma said of the charity Helen & Douglas House: “We thank them from the bottom of our hearts.”

Last year, a race night organised by Emma raised £4,000 for the hospice charity. Now, it is her husband who’s rolling up his sleeves to help the hospice. Ross is one of 14 taking part in the Tough Mudder South West race at Badminton on Saturday.The endurance race team has been corralled by family friend Michael Hiscock. He said: “Our friends Ross and Emma received so much support from Helen & Douglas House during Aliza-May’s time with us.

“We want to help and show not only our appreciation for this, but also ours by raising as much as we can to help others who might be in the same place that Ross and Emma were.”

The team has already raised more than £1,200, a few hundred pounds short of their £1,500 target.

To sponsor the racers, click here.