‘Writing songs in memory of my wife helped me grieve’

TRIBUTE Roger Park, main image, has written an album in memory of late wife, Marianne.   Picture: Allan Hutchings (110702-885)
TRIBUTE Roger Park, main image, has written an album in memory of late wife, Marianne. Picture: Allan Hutchings (110702-885)

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WHEN Roger Park’s wife Marianne died from cancer he felt inspired to write a song about his feelings.

Now he and his band have recorded an entire album dedicated to her memory with proceeds going to The Rowans Hospice, which cared for her in the last weeks of her life.

‘For me it’s a way of remembering Maz and giving to a worthy cause,’ said Roger, 53, of Alver Road, Fratton.

‘Maz was very poorly when she went into The Rowans but the standard of care she received was truly incredible.

‘The medical staff at the hospice attended not only to her welfare and pain relief, but were able to make the dying experience one of dignity.

‘Maz spent the last two weeks of her life at The Rowans and it really was amazing.

‘The service it provides is just wonderful.

‘When people are facing such a terrible thing, the hospice is a good place to be.’

Marianne, who was once in the band The Shade alongside her husband, was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer in September 2009. She died at the hospice in Purbrook in May last year, aged 42.

During the initial grieving process, Roger decided to put pen to paper to help express his feelings.

He said: ‘Two weeks after she died I was sitting there and thinking “where are you now?” and “what happened to you?”. I then decided to start writing about the way I felt, because I was missing her dreadfully. The song was called Where are you now? I found it helped to put my thoughts down on paper.

‘We then got together as a band and recorded it and it went from there.’

Staff at The Rowans Hospice in Purbrook are fully supporting Roger’s project, which has already raised hundreds of pounds.

Lesley Woodcock, community fundraiser at the hospice, said: ‘We hope people will support this fundraising project and enjoy the music. Roger has put his heart and soul into creating this album and the first track Where are you now? is very moving.

‘Although some people will be able to relate to the sense of loss Roger felt when he wrote this song, the album will appeal to a wide audience as well.’

The album is available for download for £8 at theshademusic.co.uk.