Posted on February 15, 2017

We have been touched by asbestos in individual ways, yet we are joined together by a bond of community. As a testament to the strength of our global family, the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) is highlighting the courageous stories of our members with the “Share Your Story” feature on our website.

This week, we would like to honor the story of Brian, as shared by his wife Clair, who is a part of our ADAO family.

We encourage you to submit your personal stories by clicking here and following the simple instructions on the page. In sharing, comes healing. Remember, you are not alone.

“I Continue In His Honour” – Brian’s Story

Name: Brian

Location: United Kingdom

Date of Birth: 1952

Diagnosis: Mesothelioma

Date of Diagnosis: 2015

Treatment: Palliative only due extreme advance.

Date of Death: 2015

How has asbestos changed your life? (Shared by his wife, Clair, unedited)

After 25 years of marriage and 27 years together, I miss Brian every day. He dedicated his life to teaching and later to Chiropractics and Sports Injury Therapy. We brought up 3 sons and had 2 grandsons who miss him dreadfully. My life seems barren without him and we had looked forward to growing old together. It seems that 27 years teaching in the same Secondary School in East Grinstead, West Sussex caused this appalling cancer of which there is no cure. I watched a 6ft 4″ rugby, basketball and overall brilliant sportsman who was really fit, die within 8 weeks 6 days from diagnosis. Throughout he stayed relatively positive despite the intense pain he suffered. I remember how brave he was and realise now how much he hid from me and the family. The postmortem revealed how widely spread the cancer had become and I have spent much of the last year campaigning to raise funds for St Wilfrid’s Hospice Eastbourne who looked after him magnificently as well as supporting any campaigning to rid asbestos from schools, instead of hiding it. West Sussex County Council have admitted liability for Brian’s death but nothing will bring him back and give us the 25-30 possible years that we could have enjoyed together. He was a most talented sportsman and loved life. We enjoyed travelling and dining out and although I continue in his honour, it is not the same at all. The world has become quite lonely although I do have wonderful friends and family. I am however, aware that people have their own lives. To watch someone suffer and slowly die, is such a painful thing to do and in the end, I felt relieved for him, that the pain ceased and he could leave us in peace. It is only afterwards, that you feel so desolate and devastated. It never leaves me, I just put on my professional face so others don’t see how painful it all is.

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