Sara Moore is mum to three young children, Clara, Archie and Pacha and is still coming to terms with the loss of her 38 year old husband and childhood sweetheart, Nigel who passed away at the Hospice a year ago.

“Nigel was a lovely family man and very popular with his friends. He worked away from home a lot but he liked to spend his spare time with his family. He lived life to the full, and always saw the good in people. He was my best friend as we had been together since our early teens.”

It was while on holiday with his family on the Isle of Wight in 2012 that Nigel became ill with a swollen stomach and was admitted to the local hospital for tests. Following a biopsy and scans at Somerfield Hospital and further tests at Maidstone Hospital, Nigel was diagnosed with a tumour in the colon and secondary to the abdominal lining.

Months of regular trips to the hospital for chemotherapy and blood transfusions followed.

“I thought we were winning the battle until the hospital told us that the cancer has spread to some of Nigel’s organs. We knew it wasn’t a good prognosis, but Nigel remained positive – his motto was ‘there’s always hope.”

Seven months after being diagnosed with bowel cancer and during a course of chemotherapy treatment at Pembury Hospital, Nigel became too ill and was transferred to the Hospice where he was cared for during his final days. He died in the early hours of Wednesday 6th March 2012 with Sara by his side. “Nigel was a very private man and I feel honoured to have been with him when he passed away. As soon as we arrived at the Hospice we were greeted with smiling, caring faces. All the staff were very attentive and Nigel would often have a laugh and a joke with them. He told them I was the love of his life and would show them photos of the children.

They really looked after me as well and I was able to talk to Liz, a counsellor at the Hospice for support on how to tell the children that Nigel would pass away. She also spoke to the Family Community Manager at the children’s school.

When Nigel died the nurse gave me time to say goodbye to him. Out of what was such a terrible tragedy, they made it the best they could. Nigel’s room had lovely views which looked out across Preston Hall. Every day we could see the squirrels in the garden. It was warm so we could have the doors open and Nigel would wake up to sunshine streaming into his room.

A little while later, we bought orange tulip bulbs from Pashley Manor as a gift to the Hospice. We chose the colour as I wore an orange outfit at Nigel’s funeral.

Inspired by the care Nigel received, Sara and Nigel’s best friend Steve have gone on to organise charity events to raise funds for the Hospice.

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