The Leicestershire & Rutland Community Foundation have recently set up the ‘Richi Rootz Foundation’ in memory of Richi Rootz. Richi was a Leicester based musician, social worker, much-loved husband, father and friend.
Richi suffered a significant stroke on August 13th 2011. He had no previous illness and he was only 48.
He spent ten days in acute care at the stroke unit at LRI, and then was transferred to the GeneralHospital for rehabilitation. Richi made excellent progress at LRI and his prospects were good for recovery, although it was clear that he would be left with a disability of some sort.
The majority of stroke victims are older, and therefore there was no meaningful provision or support for Rich as a young stroke victim at the General. His family tried to get him moved to the young Disabled Unit, but were not able to. The time spent on the ward was rather depressing and isolating.
His wife, Mel, was able to spend mornings and evenings with Richi in hospital, and thanks to a supportive network of friends he wasn’t too lonely. There was little understanding of the needs of the younger stroke victim, and Richi and his wife both felt strongly that they would like to raise awareness of this and do something to support people in a similar situation.
During his time in hospital, Mel and Richi talked about various ideas of how to raise money and awareness around these issues and planned on organising a benefit gig when he left hospital.
Unfortunately, Richi never left hospital. He died on 5th September 2011 of a pulmonary embolus.
Staying true to his wishes, Mel and friends went on to organise their first Richi’s Rootz Night on 9th June 2012. The money raised went to The Laura Centre which had supported Mel and her daughter through their loss.
With the help of the Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation Mel has set up the ‘Richi Rootz Foundation’. The foundation will provide support for young stroke victims and aims to raise awareness of young stroke sufferers.
So far the Richi Rootz Foundation has raised over £1,000. To donate please click on the orange ‘Make a donation’ box on the left of the screen.