My daughter, Kate, was 31 years old in October 1995, and a third year mature student at Reading University studying for her degree.
My husband Ken and I were looking after her 10-year-old son Aaron that weekend while she was studying. Ken thought she did not look well when we picked Aaron up but she said she was OK and and when she phoned on the Sunday morning she did not say anything was amiss.
Just before we were leaving to pick up Aaron from school on the Monday, Kate phoned and said she had a headache and could we bring painkillers. Ken said she sounded awful. We picked Aaron up and luckily, for the first time ever, he had a door key with him as the sight that met us was unforgettable.
Although she was upstairs in bed and in considerable pain she had been really ill downstairs. Ken stayed downstairs to clean up. She said she had the flu, and Aaron helped me find the doctors' telephone number and it was arranged to take her there before surgery started. She was unable to dress herself, and, as I helped, I noticed deep red blotches all over her body apart from her face, and I had no idea at all what was wrong.