Emma Jelley will take part in the Simplyhealth Great East Run as part of the St Nicholas Hospice team to raise money for them following the amazing care they provided to her dad and her family.
A woman from Elmswell will run a half marathon to thank the local hospital for the care of her father in his final hours and support they provided to her family after their loss.
Emma's father, Alec, has been first diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2009 and was successfully treated at Ipswich Hospital.
However, in a few years he developed leukaemia that was a shock to the whole family. Luckily, after the intensive chemotherapy treatment he managed to beat the disease and was in remission.
Unfortunately, in January 2015 Alec was diagnosed with bone cancer and this time the doctors told him there was only palliative care available to him.
He received a great care at West Suffolk Hospital but wanted to spend his final hours in a quieter and less busy place. In June 2015, the family transferred Alec to St Nicholas Hospice where he spent his final 11 hours with his family and passed away being 72-years-old.
After Alec passed away, the hospice offered Emma and her mum a Bereavement Counselling. Emma said she feels very thankful for the amazing team who helped her and her mum to deal with their grief.
Emma, 49, said: “My Dad was a very quiet man from a farming background and loved sailing.
“Once we arrived in the Hospice, he was calm and very much at peace. I firmly believe that he knew he had been moved to a quiet, calm environment as he seemed to relax.
“The Doctors and ward staff made us feel so welcome. Nothing was too much trouble. They had a way of making us feel like we were the only people that this was happening to and that they were completely there to help us.”
A few months after her loss, Emma was made redundant but luckily found a job at the same Hospice which was close to her heart. She is now a PA to the Clinical Services Director.
This year Emma will join the team of 10 who will be running for the St Nicholas Hospice and is very excited to raise funds for the institution.
She took part in various running events in the past but stopped due to the challenges of two young children and a full time job. Last year she decided to go back to running and started her ‘Get fit for 50' routine.
Now she is busy preparing for the Simplyhealth Great East Run which returns to Ipswich on Sunday 16 September.
The half marathon is a sold-out event where runners can take on a challenge across a scenic course that starts and finishes in Ipswich town centre.
It starts and finishes on Russell Road and takes runners through many beautiful landmarks such as Holywells Park, Ipswich waterfront, Orwell Bridge and Ipswich Town FC's Portman Road stadium.
Emma added: “The offer of the Bereavement Counselling Service was made when Dad died but it wasn't until just after the first anniversary of his death that I made use of it and my Mum only this year.
“This is something I wish I had not taken so long to take up but even now, three years later, I can still book time to speak to someone if I need to.
“Grief is an odd thing. Everyone deals with it differently. I have found this third year since Daddy died far tougher than the previous years. The counselling has proved a complete godsend to me.
“Although I am not ‘frontline' the incredible sense of well-being I get from knowing that I am part of a team of people who help others in some of their saddest times, whether in the Hospice building itself or out in the Community, is beyond measure.
“Training for the Simplyhealth Great East Run has reminded me how much I love the freedom that I feel when I am out and I have found some lovely running routes around the villages where I live.”