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Health professionals

For Robin Marwick, cancer has unfortunately impacted her family more than most. In just over six years, she lost her father, husband and daughter to cancer. She’s hosting a morning tea in memory of her loved ones and in the hopes of one day finding a cure, so others don’t have to face what she has.

Robin’s Story

“There are not many of us that aren’t impacted by this terrible disease. In a few short years I have lost three of my closest family members to cancer; my beloved husband, my precious daughter, and my amazing father.

“My beautiful husband Clive was diagnosed with prostate cancer in March 2015. Life changed immediately after hearing the words “you have cancer”. We were both shocked, confused, and scared. Following surgery to remove his prostate, the tumours, and the lymph glands, he was given radiation to ensure no cancer cells remained. After routine blood tests, we were told he was clear of his prostate cancer. We were jubilant; we’d dodged that bullet!

“Then just a few months later, Clive (who was an asthmatic) was suffering from shortness of breath. It had been a terrible season for pollen and allergies, and we thought perhaps he simply needed to have his preventer treatment reviewed. Following a chest x-ray and scan, we were devastated to be given the news that he had stage four lung cancer.

“While we were unsure what direction things were going to go for him at that point, he was a fighter and was so determined to be home for Christmas with his family – and he did just that. He struggled to stay with us for the next 12 months spending a lot of time in hospital, never complaining, and making sure things were put in place and everything was in order around our home, so that we would all be ok. He passed away on Tuesday, 5 December 2017. He was home, surrounded by me and our children.

“Our children played a very big part in caring for their father, always spending quality time with him and helping him do what was needed. It is so hard watching someone you love suffer and be in pain, and I am so grateful for my loving family and friends. I know, despite all his pain that he was proud of us all.

“Then, in 2020, my amazing father, Jack, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Being in his late 80s, my father elected not to have treatment aimed at a cure; but to focus on being comfortable and pain free. He was given three to six months to live but survived a further 15 months.

“Losing his independence, mobility and most of all, his beloved wife Rosie after she was placed in aged care because he could no longer care for her, whittled away at his quality of life. But throughout it all, he doggedly held on to his independence, even when the odds were stacked against him.

“After, contracting pneumonia, he was admitted to hospital in October 2021, and it was obvious he couldn’t return home after that. From that point on, his condition deteriorated rapidly, and he passed away at the end of November.

“Just four months after my father’s diagnosis, my beautiful daughter Nicky and her husband Mike welcomed their second child, Lincoln into the world. This brought so much joy to the family and my parents, particularly given their health and the heartbreak they were experiencing in being separated during a most difficult time. My daughter Nicky was so precious – a gentle and caring soul, always thinking of others and had the biggest heart. She was immensely happy, married to her best friend and the love of her life. They had an amazing little 18-month-old son Logan and their second little man had just been born. Life was good.

“Just two months later, on 9 February 2021, she was given the terrible news that she had aggressive colon cancer. Being diagnosed with cancer at any stage is heartbreaking and terrifying, especially when you hear the words “stage four”. Nicky was very proactive, never complaining, keeping everything to herself, always making memories and, even when she felt so sick – always a smile and hiding her tears and heartache. She was always concerned for everyone else. She would often tell me there were other people worse off than her. She bravely wrote birthday cards for both her baby boys to be given to them through to their 21st birthdays, and letters for both them and her husband Mike. She also arranged special gifts as surprises to be given following her death for both Mike and me.

“She passed away on Tuesday February 2022 in our family home that she grew up in, with both me and Mike there beside her holding her hands. I like to think her father was there waiting for her.

I am so grateful for all the wonderful help, support, and care that they all received enabling them to stay with us as long as possible. I hope one day we can find a cure for this dreadful disease and save others from all their pain and sadness.

“In memory of my beautiful daughter, husband, father, and those so close to my heart that are now battling this horrible disease I would like to make a difference. Your help and kind donations are so much appreciated – thank you.”