A Bucks woman took part in a special walk for charity after losing her husband to sudden cardiac arrest.

Melanie Hill, from Amersham, together with her family joined the national cardiac charity SADS UK in London’s Hyde Park to raise awareness about Sudden Arrhytmic Death Syndrome on May 8.

Melanie lost her husband Christopher Hill to the devastating syndrome in January 2018.

Melanie said “Chris was just 57-years-old when he died from a SADS induced cardiac arrest.

“He was fit, happy and healthy, and had never shown any symptoms to indicate the condition. 

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“We will spend the future raising awareness and funds for SADS UK, as it was a condition we had never been aware of.

“We are missing Chris every day, and our lives will never be the same without him in it.

“It was too soon and too sudden, a lot like the other SADS stories we have read. We are sending strength to other families going through something similar.”

Since Chris’s tragic death Melanie and her family have raised awareness and funds for SADS UK and have placed defibrillators in his memory to help save lives, including the ‘Stride to STOP SADS’ campaign.

The heartfelt event was a chance for those who have experienced SADS to get together to walk and talk about their experience with those who have lived through it.  

Sudden cardiac death of young people is caused mainly by different types of heart muscle diseases (cardiomyopathy) or by disorders of the electrical conduction system of the heart, which can cause arrhythmias, such as Long-QT syndrome, Brugada Syndrome, CPVT or Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, the charity said.

Having defibrillators at schools and in the community – which SADS UK also donates – gives a those suffering a cardiac arrest the best chance of survival.

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Using CPR alone provides only a five percent chance of survival, while early use of a defibrillator as well increases the survival chance to more  than 50 percent.

Anne Jolly MBE and Founder of SADS UK explained why coming together for the walk was beneficial: “There are very relevant benefits for anyone mourning a tragic loss or someone who has survived a Sudden Cardiac Arrest. 

“Grief and Sudden Cardiac Arrest are highly stressful experiences for individuals and their family and friends.

A patron of SADS UK, Dr Hilary Jones GP MBE said: “As Patron to the national cardiac charity SADS UK I fully support the Stride with SADS UK to STOP SADS event.

“SADS UK is making enormous strides helping communities install defibrillators, providing support to people affected by SADS and funding research to understand more about sudden cardiac arrest and how to identify people who may be at risk and treat them.”