The heartbreak of losing loved ones at Severn Hospice has brought the family of sisters Steph, Sue and Lesley even closer together.
They first experienced our care back in 2013, after Steph Hardman’s husband of 37 years, Jim, was diagnosed with incurable lung cancer.
The grandfather received ‘amazing’ care at our Telford hospice and spent his final days in the company of his family until his death on 24 April 2013.
Four years later, Steph, Sue and Lesley lost their dear sister Fran in May 2017 in our care while Lesley’s mother-in-law Heather sadly died just seven months later.
The support the family received has inspired them to take on a host of fundraising challenges and events to raise money for us – from holding family fun days and cake stalls to trekking the Great Wall of China.
This is why Steph, Sue and Lesley will walk in memory of their loved ones at our new Forget Me Not Walk at The Quarry in Shrewsbury.
To join them at the event on Sunday 19 May click here.
“On every occasion the Severn Hospice staff have shown immense care and support not only to Jim, Fran and Heather but to all of our family,” said Steph, from Telford.
“We are all so grateful to them and we will continue to support them as long as we are able, we want to help others benefit as we have.
“We have spent lots of quality time together – we’ve had fun making cakes together, sewing Christmas decorations and knitting cuddly toys. It has brought us all together as a family, and given us a sense of achievement in the activities that we have done.
“But mostly we are proud that we have been able to help ensure that other people can benefit from the love and the care that we have received.”
Steph says her husband Jim was a true family man and will always be remembered for being a brilliant husband to her and father to daughters Ellie and Beth.
A self-employed architectural technician, he loved to paint in his spare time and would cook a meal for his extended family every week.
He also loved to write stories for his grandchildren Imogen and Seb and promised to write them each a story on every birthday and Christmas.
Sadly, Jim only got to write one story for Seb and never got to meet his grandson Jimmy or granddaughter Polly.
“Jim loved nothing more than spending time with us as a family. Some of my favourite memories are Christmas treasure hunts that he did for our two daughters.
“He would be up until 3am making up clues for them to find. Every year even when they became adults, he would say there wouldn’t be a treasure hunt but there always was, right up until his last Christmas.
“We make a point of telling our grandchildren about Jim. They know that grandad paints the rainbows in the sky to show that he is watching over them,” added Steph.
Steph and her family didn’t really know much about what a hospice was like before Jim’s death.
They now care passionately for us and do everything they can to ensure we can be there for families who need us in the future.
“Jim received such amazing care and compassion from the staff. His pain stopped as soon as he arrived on the ward, and my daughters and I were able to spend quality time with him during the final week of his life.
“I immediately felt that the staff really cared about Jim, and about all of our family. Staff are attentive and helpful and continue this support for as long as you feel you need it.”
Our Forget Me Not Walk aims to give walkers the chance to remember loved ones that are no longer with us while supporting our work.
The event will start at 11am and entry costs £15 for adults, £5 for a child under 15 while children under five go free. A family ticket (two adults and two children) is £35.
To join Steph, Sue and Lesley and our other event ambassadors at the Forget Me Not Walk on Sunday 19 May click here.