Stacey Leatherby is taking part in St. Margaret’s Great Somerset Walk in memory of her Dad, Richard, who was diagnosed with bowel and liver cancer in October 2010. When her Dad became too ill to stay at home, he came to stay at St. Margaret’s Yeovil Hospice. After a short 7 week battle, Richard sadly passed away on 18th December 2010. Here’s what Stacey had to say about the hospice, and taking part in the Great Somerset Walk…      

“St. Margaret’s means so much to me. I was just 20 when my Dad was diagnosed with cancer and I was still very naive about what places like these – hospices – were all about. However, to witness first-hand what an amazing service they provide was a great reassurance and support.

Being 20, there were many things I didn’t understand (or, looking back, maybe didn’t want to understand) but I always felt like all the staff went out of their way to help and support me; whether that was the doctors giving me extra information to help me understand things, volunteers sitting with me when I couldn’t go in to Dad’s room, right down to the chefs asking if I wanted any food.

The grounds at the hospice are beautiful, and I remember fondly the lovely gardens that my Dad’s room in the hospice looked out on to. Dad was also in the hospice when there was heavy snow, which made it even more beautiful.

St. Margaret’s events are hugely important to me to remember Dad while raising vital funds for the hospice. A few months after Dad passed away (weeks after giving birth to my son) I took part in their Nightstrider event at Taunton Racecourse, and I’m now looking forward to the Great Somerset Walk.

I couldn’t even put into words how much St. Margaret’s helped me at the hardest time of my life. They gave around the clock care whenever Dad needed it, and nothing was ever too much hassle; even cooking a meal in the middle of the night. 

If fundraising helps make sure these amazing people are around to help others, I’ll do everything I can to raise money and awareness. St. Margaret’s made Dad’s remaining time here the best it could have been, and for that I'll be forever grateful."