Brave student beats tragedy to win award

Santanna Kinnish
Santanna Kinnish

A Heysham student has won a national award for her studies despite having to deal with the death of both her parents.

Santanna Kinnish has been named the Outstanding BTEC Land Based Student of the Year in the National BTEC Awards.

The 17-year-old horse management student at Myerscough College lost her mother to cancer before finding our her father had also passed away.

She said: “Mum went into hospital with cervical cancer and she was supposed to have a hysterectomy but during the operation something went wrong.

“She was only supposed to be in hospital for three weeks then six at home recovering but it turned into 10 months.

“She was able to come home eventually but fell quite ill and we found out that her cancer had spread and she’d only have a few days to live.

“She lived for another week and everyone was surprised but it showed how strong she was.”

After her mother’s death Santanna looked for her father, only to discover he had died a few months earlier.

Despite these losses Santanna is on target for a distinction when she completes her course at the end of June.

She will now attend a ceremony in July in London and as part of her prize Santanna, along with her tutor, Charlotte Walsh and friends and family will be heading to the House of Lords for a luncheon, followed by a chauffeur-driven ride to the Royal Horticulture Hall in Westminster for the awards ceremony itself.

Santanna said: “My mum would be really proud because she knows how much I like working with animals and how hard I’ve worked.”