Michael Dobbs kindly shared the story of why he and his family have raised an incredible £26,000 for Cransley Hospice in the 7 years since his beloved father Ken Dobbs passed away.
Ken was just 57 when he passed away at Cransley Hospice in January 2013. Ken left behind his 3 sons, his girlfriend of 7 years, Lynn, and his ex-wife, Gill. Although Ken and Gill had been separated for many years, they remained very good friends for the whole time.
Ken was a very well-known and well-liked member of the community as well as a devoted family man. He was known to so many through the Scout movement, football refereeing, cricket umpiring and his association with Rushden & Diamonds, including being the stadium announcer and running their monthly quiz nights for many years. His general kindness to everyone he met meant that people were naturally drawn to him.
In October 2012, Ken was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of oesophageal cancer. The night before Ken was admitted to Cransley in the December of 2012 was especially tough for him and those close to him, but, the following day they heard that he had a place at Cransley. When Ken walked through the doors in early December “you could see he was physically relieved to be there.”
“Whilst he was at Cransley, as far as he could be, he was back to himself, cracking (bad) jokes and playing tricks on the hospice staff and his visitors. You could tell he felt safe and comfortable at the hospice which made it easier for us. We knew that he was looked after and that whenever we left him, we felt reassured that the staff were around, and he wouldn’t feel alone.”
Ken insisted the family keep to their original New Year’s Eve plans and he saw in 2013 celebrating with Lynn and some of the nurses who sat with him for the evening. “On the night of Kens passing in January, one member of staff stayed way beyond the end of their shift to help him and the family through a very traumatic evening. During his 4 weeks in the hospice, the staff were incredible to us all, explaining things, reassuring us and helping us as a whole family. Cransley Hospice will forever have a special place in our hearts. It is an amazing facility that helps so many families like ours through such difficult times with an unrelenting level of care and support. Because of this our family has and will continue to, raise money to support Cransley Hospice.”
Michael and his brothers, Andy and Richard, took part in the Cransley Big Cycle riding 100km on the 2nd August hoping to raise £1000. The current total is more than £1500. Michael and Andy cycled the route of the 2019 event around Northamptonshire and Cambridgeshire while Richard (who moved to China in 2018) cycled around Shanghai.
The whole family have been involved with fundraising raising an incredible £26,000 for Cransley Hospice over the years, Andy ran the London Marathon and Gill abseiled the Northampton lift tower. They have taken part in cycling events and hosted golf days and Michael has run an annual quiz in his father’s memory at Raunds FC every year since Ken’s passing. This year, the quiz had to be cancelled due to coronavirus but will return either later this year or next year and the whole family will continue to support Cransley.