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17 Jun 2020 Care

Father’s Day - Nicola’s story

This Father’s Day, we are celebrating all the wonderful fathers and father figures who have touched our lives by paying tribute to them on our special dedication page. Over the coming days, we will feature 3 stories from Kirkwood staff members whose fathers were cared for by the Hospice.

Today’s story features Nicola, who joined Kirkwood in 2015 as a Fundraiser before moving to the Marketing Team. Here, she reflects on the time Kirkwood cared for her dad…

“My dad was diagnosed with cancer in late 2010 and was initially supported by Kirkwood’s Community Nurses who helped us to manage his illness throughout 2011. At the beginning of 2012, he was very poorly and spent six weeks in hospital. The hospital told us he was at the end of life and the drugs he was on made him unresponsive. It was very sad for me to see my dad, my hero, in this state.


"The hospital suggested we should consider moving Dad to Kirkwood. The day after he was admitted, I came to visit and couldn’t believe my eyes when I walked into his room. In 24 hours, he had gone from being unresponsive to sitting up in bed enjoying a bowl of cereal! It was almost as if he had been brought back to life.

"My dad was admitted to Kirkwood twice. The first time he was there for 2 weeks. He commented on how wonderful it was. He enjoyed the food, he got on with the nurses and he loved the gardens. As he approached the end of life, he was really missing home so he asked if he could return. Kirkwood organised this within 24 hours and he was at home for the next 10 days. During those 10 days, he would often tell us that we were not doing things like they did at the Hospice; we got told off a few times!

"He made the decision that he wanted to die at Kirkwood, so he was transferred back and spent the last day of his life in the peaceful sanctuary that is Kirkwood, surrounded by love and compassion.


"I will never forget what Kirkwood did for my dad. Years later, I was fortunate enough to join the Hospice as a staff member. It’s a real privilege to work for Kirkwood and I feel like I’m giving something back. It’s what my dad would have wanted.

"My sister and I will do something this Father’s Day that reminds us of Dad. He is never far from our thoughts. We love you, Dad.”

To pay your Father’s Day tribute, click here.

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