Emma Arthur, Fundraiser at HospiceCare, said “We wish our runners a fantastic time on Sunday at this amazing race. We are delighted to have so many supporters run this year –so far the team have raised over £5500 in sponsorship this could allow us to provide 22 nights of specialist Hospice At Home care and support in our local communities. I met with the Henderson family from Rothbury who are running to support the work of our nurses as we cared for their Dad/Grandad Tommy”
Tommy Henderson, lived in the Coquet Valley all his life, described by his granddaughters as a “true Northumbrian gent”. Tommy was a farm manager of 60 years married to Ellen for 68.
In early 2017 he was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer, he had been feeling poorly, had fallen and broken his hip when doctors discovered and made the diagnosis.He said from his diagnosis that he did not want to die in Hospital and wanted to be at home. At the age of 90 and 3 weeks before he died in July 2017, our Hospice at Home team came in to support Tommy and his family.
His family told us that he very much enjoyed having the nurses in to care for him as he enjoyed a great conversation and having their visits allowed for stimulation of his “active mind” and social communication in his final weeks. The respite that his son Tom received whilst our nurses were looking after his dad in those last few weeks was invaluable as Tom worked from 9 till 5.50pm through the day, would get a couple of hours rest and then spent nights talking with his Dad until 7.30am when another family member would they come.
His son Tom told us “he had a very dignified death and his wishes were granted by dying at home.” Tommy had a lot of respect for our nurses as nothing was too much for them.
Another of Tommy’s wishes was for his family to be active and this lead to discussions of the Great North Run and taking on a challenge. Phoebe and Sophie (Tommy’s granddaughters) told him of their plans “what you doing that for? For me?” was his reply – They replied “to give back to the Hospice nurses” – which he was really pleased about.
Phoebe, Sophie, Tom, Tom’s brother in law Andy Davidson and family friend Christine Brown are all running the Simply Health Great North Run this year on Sunday 9th September to raise money for HospiceCare – you can sponsor them by visiting – https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/tomhenderson1
Photo top of page – some of the HospiceCare North Northumberland supporters who are taking on the Simply Health Great North Run for the charity
Photo Gallery 1- Tom Henderson (Tommy’s Son) Phoebe Henderson & Sophie Henderson (Tommy’s Grandaughters)
Photo Gllery 2- Tommy and Ellen Henderson