More than 100 women turned out to a Zumbathon raising £1,273 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association in memory of a Horsham woman.
Every Christmas Sarah Broadley from Zumba Sussex and Sarah Howard from Horsham’s Holbrook Club hold a charity Zumbathon and last month they partnered with Crawley based Thales Training and Consultancy who lost employee Jayne Elmer, 47, to motor neurone disease in April 2011.
Some 112 women dressed up in fancy dress, Christmas hats and tinsel to dance to tracks including Gangnam Style, Santa Baby and I’m Sexy and I Know It.
Amy Slater from Thales said: “Jayne was a highly respected, highly valued and dynamic member of the team. Sadly, completely out of the blue, she started to become aware that all was not well, as with many MND sufferers, her decline was rapid and it was heartbreaking to see out strong intelligent colleague decline in such a cruel way.
“We all miss her a great deal. Supporting MNDA gives us all the opportunity to remember her and support others.”
Colleague Karen Osborn added: “Jayne had verve, even in the face of her illness. She was funny, really funny. It was a tragic loss of star quality in our lives.”
Jayne’s husband Geof Talbot of Rushams Road, Horsham, said: “I think the event reflects the high esteem in which she was held by her colleagues. MND slowly paralyses your voluntary muscles until you can no longer move, speak, swallow and ultimately breathe - whilst you fully retain your senses and your cognitive abilities.
“It is both the best and the least palatable argument for assisted suicide that there is - and Jayne desperately wanted that, which would have avoided her exceedingly traumatic death.”
For more information about MND go to www.mndassociation.org or call the charity’s helpline on 08457 626262.