This is a bit of an apology post, as i have not blogged on here for quite some time. It is also a very personal post too.
In Mid June of this year, my father Ken Simon was diagnosed with Stage 4 Pancratic and Liver Cancer. There was a mass on his Pancreas of approx 4cm and the cancer has also spread to his liver. As with a lot of cases of Pancreatic cancer, it was caught late so surgery was not an option. He did have a couple of rounds of chemotherapy, but sadly this made him quite ill so the treatment was stopped after 2 weeks around august time.
Sadly he passed away on the 27th of October aged 61 whilst staying at St Giles Hospice in Walsall. He went peacefully and in his sleep, with my mother at his side, as we had left visiting about a hour before. His and my mothers wedding anniversary was 5 days before which he spent in the hospice with her and our family.
The funeral took place at Streetly crematorium in Walsall on the 5th November, attended by all of his brothers, his sister, myself and my wife and children and my brother and his family, as well as many many close friends and extended family.
It was a simple funeral which is what he always wanted and the funeral ended on Monty Python’s “Always look on the Bright side of life” One of his favourite songs and he had always joked about having it at his funeral so we made sure it happened.
My dad was an amazing individual, as a husband to my mom, as a father to me and a grandfather to my children. Nothing was ever too much trouble for him. He would always do what he could to help others out no matter what. He was a proud man, an independent man, a stubborn man, but above all he had a fantastic sense of humour.
My dad was always proud of everything i had done, and i do hope he always will be. Every time i saw him which was at least once or twice a week he was always interested in my photography work, be it landscapes, fine art or modelling work. Without him and his support i would not be where i am today, and for that i am eternally grateful. He has always believed in me, even when i have not, he has encouraged me, supported me and expressed so much interest in my work it was a pleasure to see him every time to show him something new.
One thing that really stands out during his illness, was the kindness and caring support from the staff at St Giles Hospice. During his 2 weeks there, nothing was too much trouble for the staff, they were phenomenal people. Every thing they could do, they did, and they always went above and beyond what is normally expected of a nurse. They are truly admirable people, and real life heroes.
So the point of this post is this, next year, i will be dedicating a significant amount of time to raise funds for St Giles Hospice. Through my photography either by producing a calendar, selling prints or giving away free photoshoots, for one because i know how proud it would make my dad, and for another because the people who work at the hospice deserve every penny they can get.
Finally i would like to say this, Dad, you shall be missed, Always. There is an empty space in my heart that will never be filled where you always belong. You may be gone from this planet, and wherever you may be now, you will always be on my mind, and you shall never ever be forgotten.
Rest In Peace Ken Simon. (27th Decemeber 1953 – 27th October 2014)