A FAMILY faced with unimaginable grief and suffering have been honoured at the Warrington Guardian Inspiration Awards.

Rose Fallows and her daughters Claire and Suzanne Shipley were honoured with the Act of Courage award at the ceremony held at the Village Hotel on Thursday night.

Special mention was also given to Rose's other daughter Laura and Claire's 10-year-old Maisie for their bravery in the darkest of times.

A carer from the age of 15, Rose was left to bring up her two sisters and brother on her own.

Tragically she lost her son to diabetes type 1 when he was just 31, but in the years since she found the strength to care for her daughters Claire and Suzanne Shipley who were both subsequently given terminal diagnoses.

While Claire, from Great Sankey, was too poorly for the heart and kidney transplant she desperately needed, Rose was able to donate one of her kidneys to Suzanne who had also suffered kidney failure.

Since then Suzanne has sadly suffered sepsis twice and had to have her leg amputated.

Warrington Guardian:

Jo Tocher accepts the Act of Courage award on behalf of the family

37-year-old Claire was born at Whiston Hospital with a rare heart defect leading to a shortage of oxygen in her blood.

From birth, she underwent several life-saving operations, including open heart surgery.

During her time in intensive care she had to have additional emergency surgery and her last rites were read out.

But against the odds, Claire survived.

Aged three, Claire was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and had to manage both insulin injections and heart medication but despite her illnesses, friends describe her a a 'happy little girl who lived life to the full'.

Following a stillbirth, Claire gave birth to her miracle baby Maisie-Rose.

As she got older, she developed eye problems, nerve damage, and more recently, kidney failure.

In an emotional nomination, Rose’s other daughter Laura, who has been a tower of strength to the family, said: “These three ladies are the bravest, most inspirational women I have the pleasure to call my mum and sisters.

"I am so proud of how they have fought the battles they face every day and never given up.”

Sadly, Claire died unexpectedly two weeks ago in her sleep.

Claire has been described by her loved ones as a loving, funny and brave woman who remained incredibly strong despite suffering serious health problems.

Her funeral was held yesterday, Thursday and therefore the family were understandably not able to attend the awards.

The Warrington Guardian hopes the Outstanding Bravery and Act of Courage award will be a fitting tribute, not only to Claire but also to her daughter Maisie who has remained incredibly brave throughout.

The award has been shared jointly between Rose, Claire, Laura, Suzanne and Maisie. It was collected on their behalf by close family friend Jo Tocher.