Hi, To all our wonderful supporters.
Thank you all for your words of compassion at my darkest hour. It was wonderful and comforting to know were all there for one another.
We nursed Wazza at home. I found that very comforting to be able to take care of him to the end. The last few days of Wazza's life our son sat in a chair next to his dad's bed holding his hand. By that time we could only give Wazza a teaspoon of liquid to keep his mouth moist.The afternoon before he died our son said "Dad we have to have our last beer together". Our son picked up Wazza's teaspoon and put some beer on it, gave it to his dad & said, cheers dad. Wazza could just lift his hand a few inches off his bed to shake our son's hand. The next morning at 10:55am I was holding Wazza's hand as he was slipping away, he was looking out the window towards the park. I said, if you can hear me turn your eyes and look at me, it took a bit of time for him to turn his eyes towards me. While Wazza was looking at me & holding his hand he past on to the other side to a much better place.
Wazza's requiem mass was beautiful. Wazza was an excellent left handed guitarist and bass player. One of the songs at the mass our son chose was "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by George Harrison. I would like to share my sons eulogy he wrote for his dad's requiem mass with you, as were all family and share a common bond.
In 40 years of knowing my dad, I only once saw him have a look of absolute terror. We were talking about dying. But this was years ago, before dad knew he had cancer. Dad was talking about his wife, my mum, when she had her cancer scare. I remember his face lost all colour and the lines on his face became tight and he said "she could die".
In that moment I saw the incredible love my dad had for mum, the fear and pain he felt, and the look of complete devotion to her. I thought to myself what a wonderful man.
Just a few short weeks ago we had left the hospital for the last time and all hope was gone. Driving home I tried to make light of the situation and suggested he should have practised the harp more. We started to cry and dad grabbed my hand and said "there is nothing more I want to do, nothing more I want to see, I'm ready to go. I'm OK. I just wish I didn't have to cause my family so much pain". I expected to see the look of terror that I had seen once before but instead he was calm and only concerned for his family. What a wonderful man.
Mum and dad first laid eyes on each other when she was 7 and dad was 8. Dad was in a suit stuffing cake into his pockets and apparently not making a good impression. 10 years later they met again and got married.
That was 43 years ago. 41 of of those as husband and wife.
Dad would like me to say this. Mum, thank you for the love and care you gave dad when he needed it most. It was beautiful and sad at the same time and I could see what a difference it was making. I don't think dad has ever loved you deeper. You made his last days the best anyone could hope for.
My Dad, a wonderful man.
Thank you all for letting me share this with you, Merkel
Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.