Tributes to loved ones at Moonlit Memories walk

Families and friends take part in the Moonlit Memories walk in Southsea in support of the Rowans Hospice. (left to right), Carianne Davison pays tribute to her late dad Chris with members of her family. Her daughters Emily Davison, Bryony Davison, son in law Kevin Luff, Cariannes sister Sheralee Luff, and son Samuel Luff.  'Pictures: Ian Hargreaves  (moonlit_13)
Families and friends take part in the Moonlit Memories walk in Southsea in support of the Rowans Hospice. (left to right), Carianne Davison pays tribute to her late dad Chris with members of her family. Her daughters Emily Davison, Bryony Davison, son in law Kevin Luff, Cariannes sister Sheralee Luff, and son Samuel Luff. 'Pictures: Ian Hargreaves (moonlit_13)
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His pet dog Yugo meant the world to him.

So when Chris Davison was admitted to The Rowans Hospice, he was grateful he could still see his four-legged friend.

Chris, 72, suffered from various conditions, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder and cancer.

He died in August 2011, but his family will never forget how the Purbrook hospice helped him and the rest of the family.

On Saturday, his daughter Carianne Davison, 41, of Hilary Avenue, Cosham, and her daughters Bryony, 19, and Emily, 13, decided to walk in his memory.

Joining them was Carianne’s sister Sherralee Luff, 49, of Kingsley Road, Southsea, with her husband Kevin, 47, and son Samuel Luff, 20.

All of them wore T-shirts which carried a picture of Chris on the back.

Carianne says: ‘Dad was quite poorly and my mum Val used to look after him.

‘Macmillan nurses used to come out and offer my mum some respite, and that’s when it was agreed he would go to the Rowans for a bit.

‘It was mainly so my mum could have a break.’

Chris, a haulage contractor, was a lifelong Pompey and Formula 1 racing fan.

In August 2011, he took a turn for the worse, and ended up staying in the hospice.

He died peacefully, surrounded by his family, on August 22, 2011.

‘We were upset he had to go to The Rowans, but we also knew it was the best thing,’ adds Carianne.

‘Before he went to the hospice, he was in a bed downstairs at home, and was pretty much bed-ridden.

‘We knew he was poorly.

‘Everyone at the hospice was amazing, we couldn’t fault them.

‘When we knew dad was in his final stages, we got 16 family members to come and see him.

‘He was a massive Pompey fan, F1 and lorries, because of his job.

‘He enjoyed spending time with his family, and it would have meant a lot to him to know we were there.

‘He was an all-round great dad, husband, and grandfather, who we miss a lot.’

And to say thank you to the hospice, the family took part in the walk.

They opted for the six-mile route, which passes Portsmouth Cathedral and Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

Taking their time, as they battled with the high winds, the family felt they had time to reflect and remember.

Carianne says: ‘It was nice to be able to light a candle and have a few moments in Portsmouth Cathedral.

‘It was quite emotional, but we enjoyed it. We took our time, and really didn’t rush – we just took it easy.

‘It’s nice to be able to raise money and give something back to the hospice.’

Leigh Porter flew from Spain because she wanted to remember her mother.

Leigh, 42, along with her husband Enrique Castellanos, 45, son Lewis, 18, and daughter Rebecca, 13, came back specially for the Moonlit Memories Walk.

They remembered Leigh’s mother, Sue Hall, who died in February last year after suffering from skin cancer.

Joining in the walk was Leigh’s sister Lara Dunk, 35, of Station Road, Drayton, her daughter Kirby Adams, 16, friend Georgia Smeed, 15, and family cousin Cathy Scrimshaw, 44.

Sue was described as a positive and courageous woman.

Lara says: ‘Mum was a massive Pompey fan and had played netball for 50 years.

‘She had been battling skin cancer for 15 years, and also suffered from breast cancer.

‘But she was always positive and a very courageous person.’

‘The Rowans helped us so much, so this is our way of saying thank you.’

United in his memory, the family of Robin Smith took part in the midnight stroll.

For his wife Jackie, daughters Mandy Riggs and Nikki Hillier and the rest of the family, the walk was particularly poignant.

That’s because Saturday marked the first anniversary of Robin’s death.

The 70-year-old was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2010, and died peacefully at The Rowans Hospice last year.

Mandy, 36, of Drayton, says: ‘It was really hard to do, because it was the first anniversary.

‘But it also seemed like a fitting way to spend the evening and remember him.

‘The Rowans Hospice helped us all, as well as my dad, and we wanted to say thank you.’

The family also lit a candle in Portsmouth Cathedral.

To sponsor them, go to justgiving.com/therubyrobins.