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A dedication in memory of John and Joyce Doherty.

Mark said:

“Our Mam first became involved with donating to St Oswald’s Hospice after my Dad passed away in November 1988 and then my grandparents in 1994. Mam heard about St Oswald’s tree of life which touched her heart so she decided to donate and have 2 leaves added to the tree in the garden; one for my Dad and the other for my grandparents. Since that day Mam has donated religiously on birthdays, anniversaries and at Christmas.  

Years later we unfortunately lost a cousin and uncle who both had end of life care at St Oswald’s. This is when Mam witnessed the true meaning of the love and care they give to the patients. 

Fast forward to May 11th 2021 when Mam herself was admitted to the St Oswald’s after a short battle with cancer. It was one of her wishes to spend her final days there and this is when I experienced the true meaning of the hospice. 

From walking through the door the first time meeting the receptionist and signing in, bumping into the tea lady and being introduced to the doctors and nurses, the care and reassurance from everyone I met made me feel a strange calmness in the most horrific time of my life. Seeing my mother happy in her final days knowing she was at the hospice meant the world to us and more importantly, her.”

Mark’s sister and Joyce’s daughter, Kathleen, has supported the hospice herself for many years, after seeing how much her mam cared about the charity, and later, how it supported her family during her mam’s illness.

Kathleen added:

“Mam’s dying wish was to have her children with her and to die at St Oswald’s , which she was lucky to be able to do. From arriving on the Tuesday until she passed away on the Saturday, my mother got her wish and was in a place she loved with staff that can only be describes as angels. They are all such devoted, caring people. “

Joyce’s and John’s family will be our special guests at Light up a Life and have the honour of turning on the tree of lights at the service on Monday 12th December. The service is a special time for the family as Kathleen attended every year with Joyce and we look forward to welcoming them, and all of the other guests, to a special evening of remembrance and celebration.