Barbara and family I have just found out that Richard has gone, I'm so very sorry for your loss. I will always remember how Richard would cheer up my daughter Jamie when she was having chemo up on Birch, she was 20 and Richard was in his 60's but they would both sit there talking about their iPads and new Apps to buy. Richard invited Jamie to come and see his and Barbara's farm but sadly Jamie didn't live to see the farm but I came with Jamie's Nan and we had a lovely time on your beautiful farm, you both made us feel so welcome. It was a honour to meet you Richard and your lovely family. Sending love and strength to you Barbara and your family xx
Sent by Lisa on 05/08/2015
We have been really lucky to have met Richard - and his family. And will be missing him immensely as one of our most ardent and prolific MDS "fighter", blogger and real advocate for this disease. We first met Richard in early 2010, when Rosalind got diagnosed with MDS, when our MDS UK Patient Support Group was still fairly new, and we were looking to improve awareness and access to treatment for patients. Already, and despite the obvious worries, queries and concerns for his daughter, Richard was looking and talking about ways to help our small organisation and the MDS patient community at large. Since then and until he passed away, Richard did whatever he could to improve issues faced by MDS patients. His and Roz's blog have been incredibly helpful to many patients facing a stem cell transplant, providing a realistic, practical, detailed, reasonable as well as comforting account of the entire process. For that alone, we are so grateful to him and his family. Richard also helped to talk to other patients, offering some reassurance when some of our members needed to talk to a fellow MDS sufferer. We had many more plans involving him and MDS patients in the region of Exeter and we'll endeveour to fulfill them in future.
Richard, you'll be very much missed, but your kindness, generosity, energy and fighting spirit will be something we'll all retain and remember. It will help us to continue our work, and will assist many more patients to come, until - soon we hope - a better cure is found for this rare and devastating blood cancer. Many many thanks.
We also thank all the wonderfully generous donors, who have contributed so generously to our charity. As a small organisation, working on behalf of patients with a rare disorder, it makes an immense difference to how much we can achieve in the long term. We truly appreciate your kindness and generosity. Thank you.
MDS UK Patient Support Group.
Sent by sophie on 21/07/2015
I have known Richard since I was born nearly 60 years ago as his mum my Auntie Marjorie was like a second mum to me and my sister. She was my god mum. We spent so many happy family holidays together - the Barkers and the Fords - and spent weeks staying in Bamford with them all.
Richard so kindly attended my mum (auntie Joan)'s funeral last year and we were so pleased to see him.
Richard was a lovely, kind and funny person and I was sad to hear the news that he had died after his long illness.
My thoughts are with Barbara and all the family.
With love Lesley x
Sent by Lesley on 06/07/2015