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"I wouldn’t change my Scotty’s friends for the world."


Lexie Pallett was 11 years old when her dad, Sergeant Oliver Pallett, died by suicide. He served in the RAF for 22 years, during which time he had completed multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was an accomplished aircraft technician and served on the VC10, Herc, Voyager and A400.  

“My dad was a real aircraft geek and loved everything about them, even working on planes that were retired and taking me and my family with him,” says Lexie, now 15. “He was a kind and caring person. The memories I like to think of most are the holidays we spent away in our caravan every year, driving down tiny country roads with no idea where we were, but he always refused to believe we were lost! He loved to cook, so we would often be concocting something in the kitchen – some things turning out nicer than the others. He died by suicide in February 2020, just before lockdown.”

Lexie Pallett

How Scotty’s Little Soldiers has helped me

Many bereaved children and young people report feelings of loneliness and isolation following the death of their parent. When a bereaved military child or young person joins Scotty’s, we want them to know that they’re not alone. One of the ways we do this is by providing opportunities to connect with other members of Scotty’s through events, activities and online platforms.  

“Scotty's has given me friendships with people all over the country that I wouldn't change for the world. I wouldn't have met them if not for Scotty's, and they just all get it. I don't even have to explain what happened to my dad sometimes, as people just automatically understand and know what I’m going through, which is really nice and helps so much. The Scotty's team are also all so lovely and you just feel a connection with them straight away. I know they’re always there when I need them.”

Lexie's dad, Sgt Oliver Pallett

What can military children find difficult following the death of a parent?

Every child and young person who has experienced the death of a parent will face different struggles, and we know that being part of Scotty's does not take away the pain that comes with a bereavement. But with support and dedication, we hope to make those struggles more manageable for our members.  

“One thing I find challenging is being able to feel happy since my dad died, and I know lots of other members that feel the same way. But Scotty's has taught me it’s okay to be happy even though Dad isn’t here with me. Another thing that can be very challenging is certain subjects or topics at school. Everyone has different triggers, and in my personal experience schools haven't been the best at dealing with situations that occur in class and it can really have an impact on your mental health.”

Lexie with her dad

Why I’m part of Scotty’s Council

Scotty’s Council is a group of Scotty’s beneficiaries who provide a voice for bereaved military children and young adults. The council is made up of twelve Scotty Members (aged 11 – 17) who form the Members Council, and twelve Springboarders (aged 18 – 25) who form the Springboard Council. Together, they make the Scotty’s Council.  

“For me, my role in the Members Council is to give a voice to all the members of Scotty's opinions and say the things they want said. I take pride in my role and like to know that in my own small way I’m helping so many children and young people get the support they need.”  

The council members meet up throughout the year to provide input into the charity, providing ideas and suggestions on the support they feel bereaved military young people will benefit from the most. Our members are the reason we do what we do, so their opinions are vitally important to how we guide the direction of the charity going forward.

Lexie with some friends from the Council enjoying Scotty's Adventure Day

My favourite Scotty’s Little Soldiers memories

Lexie has been a member of Scotty’s since 2020, and in that time has taken part in a number of fun events with other bereaved military children who can relate to her and understand what she’s going through.   

“I cherish every moment I’ve spent at Scotty’s events, but if I had to pick a favourite it would be the first Scotty’s Christmas party I went to, because that’s where I made my first Scotty’s friends and realised that I wasn't alone in what I was going through. For the first time since my dad died, I felt like I was allowed to have fun. You'd be surprised how much a Christmas party, or any event Scotty’s throws, helps us to connect with people who understand what we are going through and build lifelong friendships.”

Lexie and her sister, Cerie, during Remembrance 2023

About Scotty’s

Scotty’s Little Soldiers is a military charity dedicated to supporting children and young people (0 to 25 years) who have experienced the death of a parent who served in the British Armed Forces.

Inspired by the experience of Army widow Nikki Scott, following the death of her husband Corporal Lee Scott in Afghanistan in 2009, the charity, which was set up in 2010, provides support and guidance to hundreds of bereaved military children and young people throughout their childhood.

Scotty’s currently supports over 650 bereaved children and young people. Services offered include access to child bereavement support, guidance to parents and carers, personal education and learning assistance (including grants), and fun activities such as holiday respite breaks and group events. These are all designed to remind the children and young people supported by Scotty’s that they are not alone.

If you know a child or young person who has experienced the death of a parent who served in the British Armed Forces, they could be eligible for specialist bereavement support from Scotty's Little Soldiers. Hundreds of bereaved military children aren’t getting the support they need but we are here to help. 

If you know a bereaved military child who could benefit from Scotty’s Little Soldiers support, visit our Get Support page for more information.


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