Braving the shave for hospice care

Family braves the shave in memory of Diane

In January, Glenn, 54, from Wick, shaved his head to raise vital funds for St Barnabas House, the hospice that cared for his wife, Diane, when she died in December 2021. Their two children, Charlotte, 33, and Edward, 30, also took part in the sponsored head shave in memory of their mum.

The idea came from Edward who wanted to honour his mum.

“Diane and I were married in 1987. We have two beautiful children and five (soon to be six) grandchildren,” said Glenn. “We were married nearly 35 years, but in 2019 Diane was diagnosed with Breast Cancer”.

Towards the end of 2021 Diane’s health start to deteriorate and the family received the news that the cancer was terminal. “We always knew that there was a possibility it might come to this but when the time came, we found ourselves dreading what the next months or weeks would be like.”

“I remember talking to the Oncologist when Diane was in hospital, and he asked us what was important to us now. We wanted Christmas with all the family as it was probably the last time we would all share together. He told us that we should plan for an early Christmas. So, we did, and our Christmas was arranged for 10, 11 and 12 December. 

“Diane came home from hospital in early December as she didn’t want to be in hospital any longer and felt more comfortable at home with her family around her. Her health quickly deteriorated and the nurses from St Barnabas supported us at home with daily visits, but it soon became obvious that this couldn’t continue, and it was Diane who made the decision to go into St Barnabas.”

Diane was taken to St Barnabas House on 10 December, what should have been the first day of the family’s early Christmas. “We were apprehensive about going in as we thought it would be very much like a hospital, but it wasn’t at all,” said Glenn.

“Yes, there is a clinical side to it but when I walked through the front door it felt very light, airy but homely. The Christmas decorations were up, and we all felt very comfortable.”

On 12 December, Diane sadly passed away at St Barnabas House with her husband Glenn beside her. The family never got to never their Christmas together.

“For the whole time that Diane was at St Barnabas House I never left her side. The team made it possible for me to sleep in the same room with her.

“The team at St Barnabas House made a horrible situation more bearable.”

Speaking about the family’s fundraising, Glenn said: “The date was poignant for us as we had Diane’s funeral on 6 January and braved the shave on 7 January.

“Because of the chemotherapy and radiotherapy that Diane had received she had started to lose her hair, so she asked me to shave it off for her. She wasn’t going to hide what she was going through, and I know that she would be so proud that we were able to raise money for St Barnabas House as a way of giving a little something back.”

In total the family raised over £1,800 for St Barnabas House. “I’d like to say a big thank everyone who sponsored our head shave,” said Glenn.

After the sponsored shave!

How to give

To sponsor Glenn, Charlotte, and Ed, please visit their Just Giving page.

Go to Just Giving