Family of hospice patient show their support

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A Ripon woman will be stepping out at sunrise to help a charity which she said did so much for her husband.

Vivienne Nolan’s husband Len, died in February this year in Saint Michael’s Hospice, just four months after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

Mrs Nolan and her family will be taking part in the Saint Michael’s Hospice Sunrise Walk in memory of the husband and father they loved so much.

“We will do everything we can to give something back to Saint Michael’s and taking part in the Sunrise Walk is a fitting tribute to Len,” said 64-year-old Mrs Nolan. “We loved to walk and so many of our favourite parts of Ripon are along the route.

It was during a walk they first noticed Mr Nolan was unwell.

The couple were enjoying the scenery at Robin Hood’s Bay when Mrs Nolan realised her husband seemed short of breath.

When they got home she insisted he visit the doctor and within four months he was receiving care at the hospice’s in-patient unit.

“Taking part in the walk is the perfect way to say thank you for the absolutely brilliant way the staff cared for Len and the rest of the family as well. “Even though Len was only in the inpatient unit for four or five days, it became like a home from home we were treated so well.

“We felt as though we were with friends who understood what we were going through.”

Mrs Nolan will be joined on Sunday, September 18 by her daughter Leonie Chappell, 42, and sister Toni Fraser, 57.

“Len and I were married for almost 44 years and I know he would approve of our tribute to him,” Mrs Nolan said. The Sunrise Walk starts at Sawley Village Hall and takes in a six mile route around the city ending at Ripon Cathedral.

Registration is £9 and organisers are hoping that participants will raise as much as possible through personal sponsorship. Deadline for registration is Friday, September 2. Saint Michael’s Hospice serves the district and needs £3.9million each year to maintain its current service levels.

More than 80 per cent must be raised through support from the communities it serves, its own fundraising initiatives and events such as the Sunrise Walk. The walk is supported by Ripon business Eura Audit UK which is also entering a team. Supporters can text their Sunrise Walk donations by sending the code SUNW11 and the donation amount to 70070.

The donation will be received by Saint Michael’s in full and taxpayers can also add a further 25 per cent in Government-funded Gift Aid. For more information about The Sunrise Walk event or to pick up a registration form visit the Saint Michael’s Hospice shop at 6 North Street, Ripon or telephone 01423 879 687.