“My ironwork heart will stand proudly in the garden so that a part of Dad is here with me always. When I’m outside looking after the flowers, I can have a little chat and feel that bit closer to him.”

14th February 2022

“My name is Emma, and I want to share some very special news about how St Barnabas is helping people like us remember loved ones this spring. When my dad died, my heart was completely broken. Now I can honour his memory with a personalised ironwork heart, and you can do the same for your loved ones.

“My dad, Geoffrey, had such a cheeky personality; always joking and making us smile. He was diagnosed with cancer on 16th March 2016, and from then we only had a couple of weeks before he died and our world fell apart.

“I felt so lost at the time. I was 28, but it was as though I had reverted back to being a child, just trying to tell myself that it was all a bad dream.

“Our saving grace during this horrible period was St Barnabas Hospice. The dignity and care they showed my dad was like nothing I had ever imagined. From the moment our family walked in, we felt they were caring not only for dad, but for us too.

“My brother and I struggled to process our feelings alongside making sure Mum was ok, but the nurses took over and gave us stability when everything was falling apart. Dad’s only wish was to be with Mum until the end, and St Barnabas allowed her to be there every second of every day. I don’t think people realise just how special the team at St Barnabas are.

“The incredible support we received as a family just wouldn’t have been possible, were it not for kind-hearted people like yourself who have donated to the Hospice in memory of loved ones. St Barnabas Hospice celebrates 40 years of caring for the people of Lincolnshire this year, and with your support, I know they will be able to support many more over the next 40 years.

“This spring, St Barnabas is asking supporters just like you and me, to honour loved ones by donating to the ‘Forever in our Hearts Appeal.’ If you were to give just £35.54, it could fund one hour of specialist inpatient care, just like Dad received. Your money could make such a huge difference to the people of Lincolnshire, allowing hospice care to continue long into the future.

“One memory which really stands out to me was the Lincoln 10k, which happened to take place the same day that Dad died. He always used to take part, so this time his friends ran in his honour. When the nurses found out, they came outside with me, held my hand and cheered the runners on as they ran past the Hospice. Everyone at St Barnabas has so much love to give to families and patients, which is what makes this heart display feel so special to me.

“If you donate for a heart this year, it will help St Barnabas to continue working at the heart of the community, making a real difference to people’s lives. I recently bought a new house, which was the first big milestone without Dad. My ironwork heart will stand proudly in the garden so that a part of Dad is here with me always. When I’m outside looking after the flowers, I can have a little chat and feel that bit closer to him.

“I am excited to announce that when you donate, your ironwork heart will appear in a beautiful display at Lincoln Cathedral, on the Dean’s Green, from Saturday 2nd April to Monday 18th April. Lincoln Cathedral was one of Dad’s favourite places to visit, and is where we now go every Christmas to light a candle in his memory.”

This year, for the first time since St Barnabas began creating ironwork displays, the hearts will be personalised with the names of loved ones being remembered. When you visit the Forever in our Hearts display, you will be able to see your loved one’s name among thousands of others, before bringing it home after Easter.

To dedicate a heart, please go to: https://stbarnabashospice.co.uk/foreverhearts/

 

Thank you,

Emma Gowland

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