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‘Nurses gave me valuable extra time with my husband’
The Westmorland Gazette's Driving Hospice Care campaign aims to raise £36,800 to buy two 4x4 vehicles to help nurses from St John's Hospice At Home support patients who have chosen to die at home.
A KENDAL widow has backed the campaign to get 4x4s for nurses, saying the team gave her ‘valuable’ extra time with her beloved husband in his own home.
Angela Brockbank is backing the Driving Hospice Care campaign after nurses enabled her to spend “as much time as possible” with husband, Arnold, before his death.
“There’s no way we wanted him to die in a hospital,” she said, from her Gandy Street home. “I didn’t want him somewhere he wouldn’t recognise, where I was always having to come and go, so the decision was made that he would stay at home.
“I don’t drive so I would have struggled to visit him and it was unthinkable that I would miss any of those last moments with him.
“The Hospice at Home nurses gave me valuable time with him that I will never forget.”
Mr Brockbank had tongue and mouth cancer and in October 2009 was told he had just three months to live.
Despite struggling to stand, he walked his daughter, Alex, down the aisle when she wed that December.
He lived for another six months but his condition had deteriorated to the point where he was unable to eat, talk or even smile.
“It was heartbreaking to see his decline,” continued Mrs Brockbank, 65, of her husband of 28 years.
“He couldn’t laugh or smile and he’d always been a joker – but he got a twinkle in his eye when the nurses visited and that meant so much.
“It broke up his day, having them visit, and the change in the routine was as important as anything.”
Mr Brockbank had visits up to three times a week for three months.
Nurses gave him pain relief and calmed him as well as giving his family support.
He died in June 2010, aged 71 – but the kindness of the nurses has never been forgotten by his family. “The nurses just picked up on what I needed most and really helped me too.”
Since her husband’s death Mrs Brockbank has raised funds for the hospice and encourages others to donate.
“The Hospice at Home team got me through a horrible time,” she added. “I couldn’t have done it without them.
“I hope others see the value of it too.”
To donate to the Westmorland Gazette’s Driving Hospice Care campaign send cheques made payable to Driving Hospice Care to Anna Clarke, The Westmorland Gazette, 1 Wainwright’s Yard, Kendal, Cumbria, LA9 4DP.
Cheques should be marked on the back ‘Driving Hospice Care’.
Please include your name, full postal address, telephone number and email address.
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