Swindon entrepreneur takes on ten challenges in memory of baby son

By Nick Batten on 3 January, 2020

Local businessman Karl Paul and his wife Charlotte, who lost their son Oscar in 2010 when he was born prematurely, are marking his tenth birthday by taking on ten challenges. 

The Swindon couple, who live in Rodbourne Cheney, plan to raise £10,000 to donate to the Ronald McDonald House in Bristol which gave them support at the worst time in their lives. They’ve called their fundraising effort Oscar’s 10 for 10.’

They plan to take part in it throughout the year and their tenth will be to organise a gala in Oscar’s memory in the autumn. Karl is well known in Swindon’s business community as the founder of digital marketing and SEO agency Smarter Media and Charlotte also works in the business. 

Karl said, “Charlotte and I are blessed to now have three beautiful daughters. However, for us, we have four children and we have always made sure Oscar is part of our lives. This year we will honour him in this way and perhaps help parents who are also going through a very difficult time.” 

“Losing our son was terrible,” Charlotte said. “He was such a fighter, he had an operation on his bowel at six days old, suffered from a blood infection and he still showed such strength. At 28 days he slipped away and we will never forget him.” 

Oscar was born at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon on 7th June 2010 at just 25 weeks. At the time Karl and Charlotte were in their early 20s. Oscar was so small he was transferred to St Michael’s Hospital in Bristol to be cared for in their specialist neonatal unit. During his life, Karl and Charlotte stayed at the Ronald McDonald House in Bristol. This charity relies on donations to help families of critically ill children stay nearby free of charge.

Since that time, the couple has already raised more than £30,000 in Oscar’s memory both for the House and also to buy an incubator for the special care baby unit where Oscar spent his short life. In 2020, they have set themselves a special challenge to mark the year when Oscar would have been ten years old.

During the new year, the couple plan to undertake several feats including: 

  • Running a half marathon
  • Taking part in a half Iron Man event
  • And walking for more than 40 miles on the ‘Cotswolds Plod.’

Their challenges will end with a gala ball to be held in Swindon in the autumn. Their efforts have already got off to a flying start with a £1,500 donation from the team at I AM Promotions). 

Anyone who wants to support Karl and Charlotte can do so by donating here https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/oscars10for10

Pictured above: Karl Paul, founder of Smarter Media