A ‘one in a million’ mum was able to help her family plan for their futures during their last few precious weeks together.
The specialist care provided by St Catherine’s meant that Rachel Pearson was free from pain and could make special memories with her husband Ian, daughter Claudia and son Henry at home in Preston.
Claudia, 25, said: “Mum was very much a family person and having her family and friends around her was the most important factor. Her biggest challenge was that she wished to be pain-free but also fully aware of what was going on around her. Between St Catherine’s, her district nurses and my dad, they managed to achieve that, which allowed us to spend quality time together and know she wasn’t suffering, which was comforting for all of us.
“Those few weeks that she was at home will stay with me forever. We have so many nice memories full of laughter and positivity, as was her nature. We chatted as a family and individually about what the rest of our lives had in store. I will always remember her wanting to help me plan my future wedding, and we talked about what type of dress I was going to wear and who I would invite.
“We miss her every day and those special occasions in the future will be extra difficult without her, but she has left a wonderful legacy.”
Rachel, a personal tutor at Runshaw College who ‘put everyone before herself’, was diagnosed with lung cancer in January 2020. She was in and out of hospital until April that year, when she was referred to the St Catherine’s Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS), who provide specialised palliative and end-of-life care for people in their own homes. She died in June 2020, aged 52.
Ian, 52, said: “Rachel tackled everything so positively and with the best attitude to life. She loved to travel and explore new places, and she enjoyed having people round and cooking good food. She absolutely loved her job and always went to work and came home with a smile on her face. People would comment that they always felt so at ease talking to her because she was so funny, kind and caring; she brought love, happiness and positivity to everyone she met.”
Henry, 22, added: “The care Mum received in her final weeks was outstanding; friendly and very professional, yet totally human. The nurses are exceptional, and we are totally in awe of everything they do. They went above and beyond for us; our St Catherine’s community nurse even visited us after Mum passed away to talk about how the hospice could help us as a family.”
The Pearsons are now on a mission to help St Catherine’s raise much-needed funds, and have already taken on our Moonlight and Memories Walk and last year’s Santa Dash in honour of Rachel and to give thanks to our charity.
They’ve donated an incredible £6,000 so far, and are now urging everyone in the community to join in our sponsored festive fundraiser this Christmas, in memory of loved ones or just for fun! Please click here or call 01772 629171 to take part.
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