Published 13 June 2024     More in
Tricia - remembering with St Christopher's

Tricia Ellis came to last year’s Remembering with Ribbons to remember her daughter, Vee. Here she tells us why she’ll be back again this July.

“The Remembering with Ribbons event was really quite moving.  I wasn’t sure what to expect.  I didn’t know about it myself but a close friend of mine called Joan had received information on it from St Christopher’s after she had made a donation directly to the hospice.  I and many others of Vee’s family and friends had donated to the hospice but had done it through the Just Giving site that Alex, Vee’s husband, had set up following Vee’s passing.

“Joan and I were both keen to attend, so I drove us over from Cranleigh in Surrey.  We stopped at the Bluebell cemetery near Sevenoaks where Vee is buried to visit her grave and pay our respects. “

“When we arrived at the hospice we fortunately found a nearby parking space.  Joan had never been to St Christopher’s before so I took the opportunity to show her around.  Vee spent 6 weeks in St Christopher’s and I was very familiar with the environment, having visited her almost every day. 

“It was a beautiful sunny day, as I recall, and we spent some time walking in the gardens before attending to our ribbons.  I must confess to being a bit uncertain about what was expected but it was very informal.  We wrote some messages on the ribbons in the café and then went to the gardens again to hang them on the tree.  We took a few photos to remember the event.  The atmosphere was very relaxed and I’m sure the glorious summer weather helped everyone to appreciate everything the hospice stood for.”

“It was quite emotional to watch others doing just what we had done – clearly everyone had their own special memories.”

Vee with Leo, George and Alex

Vee with Leo, George and Alex

“After hanging the ribbons we got ourselves some refreshments from the café and sat at a table in the garden.  We were just chatting about Vee remembering her bubbly personality and her childhood and teenage years spent in Cranleigh and then reflecting on how sad it was that she only lived for a relatively short time (45 years) and how devastated we were for her husband, Alex, and George and Leo her two precious boys (then aged 13 and 6).  She would have so loved to be around for longer to see them grow up – to see what they would become!

“It was at that point that the fundraising team came and spoke to us to enquire about who we had come to remember.  And the rest, as they say, is history…..”

“Joan wandered off to leave me to do the interview.  I surprised myself really that I was so willing to do this as I tend to be quite private about personal matters, but I readily agreed to the interview. 

“As I said to people afterwards, I felt that Vee was sitting on my shoulder urging me on to tell her story.  It was really a privilege to do this for her and I was so happy to help St Christopher’s too.”

Vee with Mike and Tricia

“I only hope I did her proud as she was so well loved by everyone and St Christopher’s is a wonderful place full of very special caring people.”

Dedicate a ribbon

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