Claire Marsland - Patient Relative

“On the morning of Tuesday 24th July 2012, Dad passed away peacefully in his sleep, with the curtains open to the beautiful view he so admired.”

 Claire Marsland Tile

“On the morning of Friday 13th April 2012, we received the devastating news that our lovely Dad, John Kermode, had an inoperable brain tumour, just 6 months after losing Mum to cancer of the oesophagus. Initially, Dad was able to remain at home, but one day in June he phoned me to say he couldn’t cope at home anymore. I made the long trip over to the Isle of Man, and supported dad with a visit from the Doctor, who was able to arrange for him to move to Hospice Isle of Man.

When I took Dad into Hospice, I wasn’t at all sure of what to expect, but my initial impression was that I just could not believe how homely and peaceful it was. Dad had the most beautiful room, and he loved the view of the hills he had from his window. He was welcomed with genuine compassion and respect; I was extremely grateful, knowing that I would be leaving him with a team of professionals who clearly cared about the patients.

In the following weeks, I was in Somerset, doing my job as a Head teacher, and each evening I phoned the Hospice to talk to Dad. He spoke fondly about his days, enjoying the view, listening to his CDs, meeting and talking to other patients and their families and watching the football on the TV in the family room. It was never any bother for me to phone, and to be put through to Dad. Staff would also phone me during the day to give me updates on how he was doing.

On Wednesday 18th July, I took the phone call I was dreading, that Dad’s health was declining and that I needed to be with him. I drove to Heysham that evening with my best friend to catch the overnight ferry. We didn’t go straight to Hospice, worrying that it was too early, only to receive a phone call just after seven checking that I had managed to get over; the staff were worried that I had missed the boat! When I arrived in Dad’s room, it was apparent he was very weak, but he knew I was there, for which I am extremely grateful.

Having travelled from Somerset, with nowhere to stay, I was expecting to book into a hotel in Douglas. However, I was astonished to be welcomed to stay in one of the family rooms upstairs; Hospice became my home for the next six days. I cannot express my appreciation and thanks to all of the Hospice staff who not only cared for Dad, but also for me at the most difficult of times. On the morning of Tuesday 24th July 2012, Dad passed away peacefully in his sleep, with the curtains open to the beautiful view he so admired.

After he had passed away, the Hospice Team were incredible; there was a real sense of calmness and dignity, with respect for Dad and support for me. Thank you!”

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