The school where brain tumour victim Katy Holmes was a pupil has unveiled a beautiful memorial in her honour.
St Mary Magdalen’s Catholic Primary School in Penwortham, near Preston, have had two statues erected in the school grounds in memory of the 10-year-old Katy who died of an inoperable brain tumour last year.
In recognition of Katy’s faith, the school has had statues of Our Lady of Lourdes and St Bernadette carved out of wood and placed in the school garden as a tribute to Katy.
Diane Gallagher, headteacher, said: “The school community of St Mary Magdalen’s came together with the family of Katy Holmes to witness the blessing of two statues erected in the school garden in memory of Katy Holmes.
“The family, together with staff at the school, decided that statues of Our Lady of Lourdes and St Bernadette were the best memorial we could make for Katy as Katy herself had a great fondness for the story.
“She had a statue of St Bernadette herself which meant a great deal to her and she watched the film The Song of Bernadette many times when she was ill.
“St Bernadette was very humble and was always astounded by the fact that she had such a great effect on people.
“Katy too would not doubt be astounded to see how much she impacted on so many people.
“The statues are carved in elm and are the work of James Sherliker, a wood sculptor.”
Katy’s parents Paula and David Holmes say they are touched at the memorial and found the blessing of the statues an emotional experience.
Paula said: “The whole thing was extremely emotional and I could not keep the tears back.
“Katy’s friends were there, the teachers were there and some parents were also there.
“We found it particularly touching that Chris Riding, the head teacher of All Hallows Catholic High School came down too as that is the school that Katy should have gone on to.
“It meant so much to us to have him and everyone else there.
“Before Katy became ill, she started taking herself to Mass which we thought was strange for a 10-year- old but we encouraged it because she loved her faith and we made a promise when she was baptised that we would help guide her.
“While she was poorly, she wanted to learn more about Lourdes in France so we bought her the film Song of Bernadette where she could learn all about how it all began.
“She loved it, in fact she became a little obsessed with it.
“The memorial is stunning. It is perfect and very beautiful.
“Katy would be so very proud of her school as we are too. Thank you to James for making it. Thank you to Mrs Gallagher for the idea. Thank you to all her teachers who were very actively involved and thank you to everyone who attended.”