A couple who have raised more than £250,000 for charity since the shocking death of their young daughter, have paid tribute to the young performers from a Leighton stage school, who boosted their funds by more than £800 with four special Christmas shows.
It’s been exactly ten years since aspiring dancer and stage star, 10-year-old Rosie-May Storrie, was murdered at a family party and since then her parents, Mary and Graham, have worked tirelessly to help improve the lives of other young girls.
Last Friday and Saturday they were guests of Richard Reynard, principal of Musical Theatre High, for two performances each of Singin’ In The Rain and The Sound of Music held at Leighton Middle School.
The couple, from Leicestershire, were overwhelmed by the support from the town’s rising stars. Said Mary: “The Sound of Music was Rosie-May’s favourite musical. She performed it the same as these children. We’re truly grateful for MTH making us their chosen charity.
“Rosie-May was a dancer and at stage school. She’s just got her first part in a professional panto and we managed to see her before she died.”
The Storrie’s daughter was killed in December 2003. A year later the couple couldn’t face Christmas without her and went to Sri Lanka for the holidays - where they became caught up in a tsunami that claimed 230,000 lives.
“We decided to do something to help so we set up the Rosie-May Memorial Fund and opened an orphanage for girls affected by the tsunami,” said Mary.
“We also launched a dance academy back home to give a chance to other young dancers,” said Graham.
“We used to invite stars from the West end to come and give the girls coaching and one of those was Richard who was appearing in Blood Brothers.”
Through donations the couple are supporting 20 girls in the orphanage.
Said Mary: “We sell wristbands for £1.50 and that can feed a girl for a week. We set up a website www.rosie-may.com where people can donate more if they wish.
“After she died a flood of money came in - more than £22,000. We had cheques arriving from all over the world - not that we’d ever asked for any donations - so we decided to use it to give hope to others.
“Rosie-May loved children and she was always offering to look after them. She would have loved what we have achieved in her name.”
“Our new project,” added Graham, “Is to build a classroom at the orphanage. Absolutely every penny we raise goes to the fund. People can sponsor a child for £5 a week and that small sum keeps them at the home, paying for their food, clothes and medical expenses.”
Said Richard: “They are just such incredible people. We wanted to help.”