Dukinfield woman wants to give back after People’s Postcode Lottery win

A DUKINFIELD woman wants to give back after winning more than £400,000 six years after the death of her twin boys.

NHS support worker Rachel Lee won £405,000 after her address was named as the one receiving the People’s Postcode Lottery’s £1 Million Millionaire Street prize the day before her 34th birthday.

Amazingly, she was the only person in that area playing, meaning the windfall.

Now she has vowed to help other poorly children by pursuing her bid to become a paediatric nurse.

Rachel was left “in pieces” after suffering the tragic loss of baby boys – who she and husband John named Reggie and Ronnie – during childbirth in 2018. Her life was also in danger after she contracted sepsis.

NHS support worker Rachel Lee won £405,000 after her address was named as the one receiving the People’s Postcode Lottery’s £1 Million Millionaire Street prize the day before her 34th birthday.

On top of that, her stepdad had a double leg amputation and the couple were victims of a car robbery.

Rachel and John broke down in tears after learning she had won the lion’s share of the prize.

But even then, their children – who will be remembered with a Life For A Life tree planted at nearby Dove Stone Reservoir – and others were not far from their mind.

Rachel said: “This just doesn’t happen to us. We’re used to picking up the phone to bad news.

“They sacrificed themselves for me. It’s heartbreaking that it happened, but in a way, I’m here to keep them alive.

Rachel has vowed to help other poorly children by pursuing her bid to become a paediatric nurse.

“We got told that if I hadn’t given birth when I did, I would have had 24 hours to live and would have died as well.”

“I want to keep their memories alive by helping poorly children.”

Rachel faced the ‘toughest decision of her life’ to terminate one of the twins when doctors discovered the baby had severe medical conditions and was unlikely to survive.

The couple’s worst nightmares were realised when their second child was born prematurely and died two hours later.

John said: “We were told there was a three per cent chance of failure, saving his twin brother, following the termination.

“We knew the risks and we were terribly unfortunate.”

Now Rachel, who works as an NHS Children’s Complex Needs Support Worker in Tameside and Glossop, said the winnings will allow her to pursue a job as a paediatric nurse.

And it is such a change for the couple, who have been together for seven years, got married during lockdown but had to cancel their honeymoon because of the pandemic – and then had their car stolen.

To further add to their woes, Rachel’s stepdad Mike had both his legs amputated after medical complications which has left him needing 24-hour care.

Now, Rachel and John are now looking at buying a new house and taking a long-awaited honeymoon. She is also eyeing a new car and a trip to New York for her husband’s 40th.

She added: “I worked in a nursery for 13 years as an assistant manager and I’d had enough.

“I wanted to give back and do something with my career after everything I’ve been through.

“When I got the job with the NHS, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I want to be a paediatric nurse and I want to look after poorly children.

And because Rachel’s postcode has won, it also meant local organisations benefited, with Home-Start HOST awarded £75,000 by Postcode Community Trust.

“I can now do a Masters nursing degree and make it happen.

“Since we’ve been together, we’ve not had good luck from the start. To add to everything else, John’s car was stolen from outside our house when we were both at home.

“It’s been an awful time. Mike can’t have prosthetic legs because of his age and his weight loss. He was 17 stone when he went into hospital and now he’s under 10.

“It’s been horrible for Mike, and it’s been really hard for the whole family.”

John, who works for a fire alarm company, added: “It has a lot to do with losing our twin boys and she’s always wanted to give something back.

Rachel was left “in pieces” after suffering the tragic loss of baby boys – who she and husband John named Reggie and Ronnie – during childbirth in 2018. Her life was also in danger after she contracted sepsis.

“To work with kids like that and families like that.

“It’s taken a bit of time because it was still so close and tender. But just to see the change in Rachel since she’s worked there and been doing that.

“She’s a lot happier and now she can go and fulfil that properly.”

Caring Rachel will also try to alleviate some of the family stress with her new-found wealth.

She continued: “My mum and stepdad share their house with my brother, his wife and two kids, so it’s a busy house and it’s very difficult with the round-the-clock care that Mike now needs.

“I could help my brother with a deposit on a house and I’ll buy a mobility car for Mike.

“It’s a huge early birthday present.”

As Rachel won the maximum ticket prize and was the only player in the winning postcode, the remaining prize money – more than £594,000 – was shared between players in the postcode sector – SK16 4.

That meant more than 1,280 players won cash sums ranging from £419 to £1,257, depending on how many tickets they played with.

And because her postcode has won, it also meant local organisations benefited, with Home-Start HOST awarded £75,000 by Postcode Community Trust.

Mummy’s Star, a charity dedicated to those diagnosed with cancer through pregnancy or within 12 months of giving birth, received the same sum.

Dukinfield’s Together Centre has been given £25,000 while The Shed Tameside is being boosted to the tune of £15,000.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *