Heartbroken parents launch bid to turn stillborn baby’s ashes into jewellery

The parents of a stillborn baby have launched an online fundraiser to turn her ashes into special jewellery allowing them to honour and remember their daughter.

Emily Harper and her partner Máté Szabo were left "totally heart-broken and devastated" when their daughter Beth Rachel Szabo was stillborn at North Devon District Hospital on January 24.

At first they were delighted to learn their of the new arrival, but complications were detected at a 28-week scan.

The couple had found out they were pregnant just after getting engaged at a local beauty spot in Instow and said it was a "really happy surprise".

Emily from Barnstaple, Devon, who works as a housing officer at North Devon Council, said her pregnancy had been "consultant-led" from the start due to her being over the age of 35 and in the high-risk category.


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She said: "We'd been progressing through the pregnancy really well and were about to be signed off after our 28-week scan.

"I had a nice big bump, meaning the baby was growing, and we were generally very relaxed about it all."

But weeks later it was discovered that their daughter had ventriculomegaly – or fluid on her brain.

Emily, who also has a seven-year-old son called Abel, said: "We were so shocked, we'd got so far and didn't think there was anything more to worry about.

"We spent the next couple of weeks attending many appointments at hospitals in Bristol and Exeter and having endless tests.

"They discovered I had too much fluid in the womb which can bring on premature birth.

"By this point we knew she'd be seriously unwell if she was born alive and may not have survived without major treatment."

On Friday, January 24, Emily went into labour at just 32 weeks.  Sadly Beth was stillborn at 7am.


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Emily said: "We're absolutely devastated, it's been horrible.

"We registered her today which has been really tough.

"She will be cremated next week and we are planning to spread her ashes at the spot in Instow where we got engaged, it's so beautiful there."

Emily said one thing that has given her some comfort is donating her breast milk to Southmead Hospital.

She said: "It's really good to know that it will help other premature babies and babies in need.

"We want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for the support we have received throughout such a difficult time.

"We really appreciate the love, kindness, and help with Abel. We couldn't have got through this dreadful time without it."

Emily and Máté have set up a crowdfunding page in the hope of raising enough money to have some of Beth's ashes turned into special jewellery.

She said: "When it happened, I didn't want to tell anyone about it. I still have a big bump from my pregnancy and everyone who knew I was expecting was asking how it was going.

"Setting up the GoFundMe page was a good way of letting people know what had happened and how they could help if they wanted to.

"We both have relatives overseas and it's a good way of keeping them up to date with any progress too.

"I am planning to get a ring made while Máté wants a simple chain. It's a beautiful keepsake and a way for her memory to be close to us at all times."

You can donate by visiting  www.gofundme.com/f/goodbye-baby-beth

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