Beds, Herts & Bucks

Jake Humphrey tweet sparks donation surge for Watford fan

Ross and Naomi Coniam Image copyright Ross Coniam
Image caption Ross and Naomi Coniam's daughter Norah died hours after she was born

A father's fundraising mission in memory of his daughter beat its target after a sports presenter spotted his campaign during the FA Cup semi-final.

Watford fan Ross Coniam is attempting nine challenges in 2019 in memory of Norah who lived for just a few hours.

BT Sport's Jake Humphrey noticed the appeal on Mr Coniam's sweatshirt during the match and tweeted about it.

The Hornets fan said he was "in shock" and "an emotional wreck" after his £6,000 target was reached in two hours.

Humphrey was presenting coverage of the FA Cup semi-final between Watford and Wolves on Sunday when he was "drawn to a spectator with a message on his back".

In a series of tweets, the presenter said he researched the Nine4Norah appeal and found himself "shedding a little tear" during the match.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Jake Humphrey spotted the Nine4Norah appeal on Ross Coniam's jumper

Ross and Naomi Coniam's daughter Norah was born on 29 May but died nine hours and 56 minutes later despite doctors' efforts to save her.

Mr Coniam is attempting challenges including the London Marathon, the Isle of Wight 106km ultra challenge and the London to Brighton Bike Ride to raise money for stillbirth and neonatal death charities.

Image copyright Jake Humphrey
Image caption Jake Humphrey spotted Ross Coniam campaign while presenting for BT Sport

He began fundraising in December and had raised £3,058 of a £6,000 target before the weekend.

Tweeting about the campaign on Sunday evening, Humphrey said: "I hope this helps somewhat with your efforts, I'm really sorry for your loss, and wish you so much love and luck with the remaining challenges."

By Monday morning more than £12,000 had been raised.

Mr Coniam said: "I'm still in shock. I'm literally an emotional wreck. What Jake did was so kind."

He tweeted: "Watching @WatfordFC get to the FA Cup Final was amazing but to see all messages of support for #Nine4Norah Wow. You're are a true gent!"

Naomi Coniam said she "can't thank you enough for your random act of kindness and the overwhelming support and donations your tweets have brought in".

"Our daughter is helping to change so many lives even though she's not physically here and that makes me so proud," she tweeted.

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