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News > Marathon mum wants to raise a ‘Fortune’ after stroke

Marathon mum wants to raise a ‘Fortune’ after stroke

A year ago Carole Fortune from Edinburgh was lying on her bedroom floor paralysed after having a massive stroke. But now she’s running a marathon to give back to the charity that changed her life.  

When Carole Fortune woke up on the floor unable to move, she didn’t know what had happened to her 

Her first thought was that she had overdone things in the gym the night before, but she soon realised that she had no feeling down her left side 

It was terrifying  

Full of panic she shouted on her daughter who quickly realised that her mum was having a stroke and called 999. 

“I woke up on my bedroom floor and couldn’t push myself up,” explains Carole.  I knew something was seriously wrong when I had no feeling at all in my left arm and leg, it was terrifying.”    

But luckily Carole’s daughter Jade came to her rescue and spotted the signs of stroke straight away.  

I was so relieved that my daughter Jade was in the house when this happened as she often stays with her boyfriend at the weekends,” says Carole. “I don’t know what I would have done if she wasn’t home. She could clearly see that my face had drooped and knew I was having a stroke.” 

My stroke floored me  

Carole worked harder than ever before to get her strength back after stroke. My stroke completely floored me and I have had to rebuild my strength from using furniture to walk with to being able to run again,” she says.  

I recovered well because I was in good shape and thankfully got to hospital quickly which definitely improved my chances.

Physically I was getting better but mentally I was still struggling as I was afraid and scared of another stroke occurring.

Thankfully, she started to get help from Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland’s Stroke Nurse Thomas Jones. Thomas started visiting Carole regularly and was able to help and support her when she felt at her lowest.

Stroke nurse is brilliant

After you have a stroke, your head is swimming with questions and so many worries and I was suffering from a lot of anxiety,” says Carole.

Thomas was absolutely brilliant. He helped me come to terms with this major thing that had just interrupted my life. He is so knowledgeable and answered all my questions I had about my stroke.

carole fortune marathon mum

Carole is tackling the virtual London Marathon just one year on from suffering a paralysing stroke.

Thomas still supports me

Since the stroke, I have struggled with my voice. I found that I spoke too fast and I couldn’t help saying too much in one sentence then I was gasping for air.

I couldn’t speak loudly oclearly, making it difficult for me to join in conversations. Thomas arranged speech therapy sessions and the exercises helped with my confidence,” explains Carole.

He also arranged physiotherapist sessions as I have a weakness in my left shoulder girdle and that gave me exercises to strengthen it. I still struggle from time to time in certain situations with anxiety, but Thomas still supports me.”

The charity that changed my life

A year on from her stroke, Carole is now taking on a massive physical challenge for Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland.

“It’s now been a year since I faced the biggest challenge of my life, recovering from my stroke, and I’m determined to give back to the charity that changed my life,” says Carole.

That’s why I decided to challenge myself to run the virtual London Marathon to help other stroke survivors like me. Not only is it 26.2 miles it has almost 5,000 ft elevation as I am running over the Pentland Hills to Dolphinton.

I hope as many people as possible donate what they can, so that Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland can still be there for people like me who really need their help and services.”

Donate to Carole’s incredible marathon challenge and help others who desperately need our help right now. 


People are leaving hospital feeling scared and alone. You can change that.

Your donation can help people do more than just survive – you can help them really live.


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