A Co Down father whose daughter passed away at just eight days old touched hearts when he paid for another family’s birthday cake to mark what would have been his child’s first birthday.
The kind gesture was brought to light yesterday when the family who had ordered the Peppa Pig cake for a one-year-old girl from the Windsor Home Bakery in Banbridge arrived to pay for it only to find someone had beaten them to it.
Posting on Facebook, the one-year-old’s aunt said: “When I went to pay for it I was informed by the staff that an absolute gent of a man had came in earlier that morning and asked to pay money towards it due to it being his daughter’s first birthday that had sadly passed away at eight days old.”
She said the “lovely gesture” had “left the whole bakery in tears”.
The dad in question was Gareth Bronte, whose daughter Hannah Stella Bronte was born prematurely on September 10, 2018 weighing just two pounds, five and half ounces.
Gareth and his wife Kirsty’s baby girl lost her brave fight after eight days in ICU.
He said: “Those eight days with Hannah filled me with such joy. They’ll stay with me forever. But it doesn’t take away the pain of not seeing her growing up.”
Gareth, who lives between Loughbrickland and Rathfriland on the outskirts of Banbridge, went to the bakery to mark would have been his daughter’s first birthday.
He left a card in which he wrote: “I am unable to buy my daughter a cake of her own today but I hope you enjoy this one and have a fantastic birthday.”
He said that the family who he bought the cake for had been in touch to thank him.
Today Gareth and Kirsty are presenting a cheque to the neo-natal unit for £28,175.15 raised during a series of 10K walks the couple did in May.