Grieving mum carries round bear containing ashes of her son who died at 17-days-old


by Emma Dodds |
Published on

Laura Elliott has come to terms with the loss of her 17-day-old son by keeping a bear that contains his ashes with her all the time

The death of a child is something that no parent should ever have to suffer through.

But, devastatingly, it is a reality that Laura Elliott and her husband Mark had to live with last October.

Their 17-day-old son Cowen had barely begun to live before he was cruelly snatched away from them and passed away following a battle with meningitis.

Laura Elliott had her 17-day-old son Cowen's ashes put into a teddy bear (Credit: Caters News Agency) ©Caters News Agency

Little Cowen died from a particularly deadly strain of the infection after having it for only three-and-a-half hours.

Meningitis, which affects the membranes that protect the brain and spinal cord, kills approximately one in ten people in the UK.

Despite the best efforts of the hospital staff, they couldn't save Cowen and he passed away on 29 October.

Mum Laura, 27, said: "Cowen had colic and was always a little restless so when he started to refuse any milk, I didn't think anything of it at first.

"But the following morning his whole body turned grey and when I went to change his nappy, I saw the purple pin pricks on his body.

"I rushed him to hospital but it was already too late, his organs were shutting down and his heart was no longer beating.

"After being ventilated and watching the rash spread all over his body, we were told there was nothing more that could save him."

Laura and Mark's other two children, Ethan, six, and Skyla, three, take the bear on adventures (Credit: Caters News Agency) ©Caters News Agency

The family were introduced to the idea of Cuddle Cots after his death - a cooling pad which can be placed in any crib to allow families more time with their babies.

Cuddle Cots can provide grieving families precious time to say goodbye to their babies who have passed away. Laura said: "It stopped Cowen's little body from deteriorating and allowed both myself and Mark's families to cuddle Cowen even at his funeral."

She's now fundraising for their local hospital to have a Cuddle Cot so that other families might benefit from having extra time with their little ones.

Laura, from Derby, also revealed that the family had had Cowen's ashes placed into a teddy bear after his death, naming him Cowen The Bear.

The bear has helped Laura, who has two other children, to come to terms with the loss of baby Cowen.

Now, the family take Cowen The Bear out and about with them all the time so that they can create memories with him as if he was really there with them.

The family say the bear has helped them come to terms with their loss (Credit: Caters News Agency) ©Caters News Agency

Laura explained: "Cowen the bear has been by my side ever since we lost our baby last year. I've bought a big handbag so he fits in it and we always take photos of him out and about.

"He has been on so many adventures and having him around has helped us with the loss of Cowen. Our children, Ethan, six, and Skyla, three, can now make memories while knowing their little brother is with them.

"The last few months have been a complete blur but slowly we've come to terms with the loss of Cowen. I didn't even know you could have Cuddle Cots or ashes into bears but I hope my story allows other people to read about the options available."

Have you or a loved one ever had to deal with the death of a child? Did you use a Cuddle Cot? We would love to hear your story - get in touch by emailing us or on Facebook and Twitter.

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