In Memory

Fiona Stallwood

10 Aug 1963 - 01 Nov 2018

"Fiona was my big sister. Being born 3 years before me, Fiona was ever present in my life. Times were hard when we were young, and, living in a small bungalow, meant sharing a bedroom for much of our childhood. But, despite living under the same roof for over 30 years, whether in the family home, or latterly at her place, I must admit, I didn't know her as well, as perhaps, I would have wished. Fiona was always an intensely private person, not given to sharing her inner most thoughts and feelings as is the vogue today. However, what I did know, was how honest, decent, hard working, diligent and caring she was. In early 2016, she was diagnosed with stage 4 ovarian cancer. Inoperable. Terminal. Some people, are set apart, by great feats of say, intellect or physical strength, but for Fiona, it was her capacity to endure. She endured the rigours of chemotherapy, the hair loss, the fatigue and the nausea. The nausea, that so blighted her last months, weeks and days. But she kept calm and carried on, with hope and optimism and an indefatigability of spirit. She never looked around at others, asking "why me?" Even as the efficacy of the drugs waned, and the tiny flame of life, guttered in the chill draught of fate, she shed not a tear. She was the embodiment of stoicism, making me proud, to say that I was her brother. I recall on many occasions, as a young child, peering through the darkness, across the bedroom to where my sister lay, and fulfilling the role of annoying little brother, I would whisper loudly, repeatedly, irritatingly " Fiona, are you asleep?" hoping she would answer. But now there is only silence, as she sleeps, as she rests, in my heart, and in the hearts of others who had the good fortune to know her. Goodbye my big sis."

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