Can you help Emma lay her mum to rest?

Friends of Linslade teenager Emma Cook are rallying round to help pay for her mum’s funeral.

Julie Washington died just before Christmas, only five weeks after being diagnosed with cancer.

Emma Cook with her mum Julie

Emma Cook with her mum Julie

Tesco check-out girl Emma, 18, is struggling to be brave.

She said: “It was such a shock. I don’t think it’s sunk in yet and I know mum wouldn’t want me to be upset.

“We were very close. It wasn’t always easy for her.

“I’m an only child and it’s been me and mum since I was about 10.

Emma Cook, left, at her Year 13 summer ball

Emma Cook, left, at her Year 13 summer ball

“She was always very caring and always put me first.

“We did everything together and everyone said I was her spitting image.”

Oliver Adams bakery assistant Julie, 43, was taken to Luton & Dunstable Hospital in October with suspected gall stones.

She was transferred to Addenbrooke’s where a biopsy revealed she had breast cancer which had spread to her liver and other organs. She died on December 13.

Emma’s friends immediately got together to support her and help plan and pay for her mother’s funeral.

Kerry Turney, 18, who has known Emma since she was four and who was a fellow pupil at Vandyke Upper, said: “We came up with the idea of a Facebook donation page when we discovered how much it would cost.

“It went global and we can’t believe how much money we’ve raised – it now stands at about £2,071.”

Kerry added: “Julie was so lovely. I saw her just before she died and I wanted to cry but I couldn’t in front of Emma.

“It’s so tragic. I can’t believe how well she’s handling it.

“But she’s very reserved and doesn’t like people to see her feelings.”

Emma admitted: “Christmas was difficult but I went round to my team leader at Tesco.

“I’m still trying to pick up the pieces. I’m trying to get the lease of our home in New Road put into my name.”

She is also immensely grateful and touched that her friends are doing so much on her behalf.

Julie’s funeral is on Thursday, January 8 at Milton Keynes Crematorium.

> If you would like to help Emma lay her mum to rest, you can donate at Oliver Adams in Market Square.

Alternatively go online to

Some of the messages left on the fundraising page include:

“Such sad news, thinking of you. Will miss seeing your mum in the bakers.”

“I didnt know your mum, but I lost mine 6 weeks ago. I feel so sorry for you... Please if you need any help x”

“Thinking of you, Julie was a great mum and neighbour/friend. Will miss her x”

“God bless you, no child should have to bury their mum so young. Old Leightonions will support you.”