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Benalla joins Team Sylvie to raise money for SUDC

Fun run to raise money for Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood which took the life of 15-month-old Sylvie Watty last year.

LIBBY PRICE July 24, 2014 6:00am

Benalla residents join Team Sylvie Sunshine for the Melbourne Fun Run to raise funds for Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC) which took Sylvie Watty in 2013.Sylvie Watty on the beach.

A Benalla group of friends of the Watty family have joined Team Sylvie Sunshine for the Run Melbourne fun run on July 27.

The team was created in honour of the Wattys’ daughter Sylvie who died in September last year.

Sylvie’s death was attributed to sudden unexplained death in childhood (SUDC).

Sylvie’s father Stephen Watty grew up in Benalla and Sylvie’s grandparents Brendan and Mary Watty lived in Benalla for 27 years until the start of 2011.

Simon and Kellie Holmes, Wade Spokes, Rebecca Mathieson and Cameron James are just some of the Benalla residents who’ve joined Team Sylvie Sunshine.

Sylvie’s mother Emma said Sylvie was a healthy, active, gorgeous and happy 15-month-old.

‘‘On Sunday the 8th of September 2013 we had a wonderful day with a picnic and a trip to the MCG to soak up the footy finals fever,’’ Mrs Watty said.

‘‘That night Sylvie ate all her dinner (and half of her sister’s, too), drank all her milk, and we put her to bed without a worry in the world.

‘‘Something went wrong during the night and Sylvie never woke up.

‘‘After a thorough investigation, Sylvie’s cause of death was unascertainable and was given a diagnosis of SUDC.

‘‘This is similar to SIDS but for a child who is older than 12 months.’’

In February this year Steve Watty decided to start training for a half marathon.

A few friends wanted to join in, so the Wattys created Team Sylvie Sunshine.

There are now almost 250 people participating and they have raised close to $60000.

‘‘We want to raise awareness for the condition of SUDC,’’ Mrs Watty said.

‘‘My husband is a doctor and I am a midwife and we had never heard of this.

‘‘Sylvie has a big sister called Lena who is four. Lena and I will be walking the 5km and cheering Daddy over the finish line.

‘‘All the support and funds that are raised will never bring our darling Sylvie back. But what it does is gives us strength to go on each day and it keeps Sylvie’s spirit alive.’’

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