Ray & Jennifer's story
“It’s important to me – as it would have been to Jennifer – to support the charities that helped us. And in fact Rennie Grove's Family Support team is still helping me: I attend the charity’s Social Support Group every month."
When Ray’s wife Jennifer was diagnosed with cancer, Ian Rennie nurses cared for her in the couple’s home in Chinnor for the last year of her life.
Ray is still very involved with us, marshalling at various fundraising events. He was one of the first volunteers to sign up for our first ever Chilterns Cycle Challenge in 2011 - and urges other people to give it a go: “Iain Rennie nurses did a wonderful job of looking after my wife and they got me through that terrible time. They worked closely with all the other teams and organisations that helped us during that time: the District Nurses, Risborough Carers and Florence Nightingale Hospice. Jennifer spent time staying at Florence Nightingale Hospice, but was able to spend her last three weeks at home with me, which was what we both wanted.
“It’s important to me – as it would have been to Jennifer – to support the charities that helped us. And in fact Rennie Grove's Family Support team is still helping me: I attend the charity’s Social Support Group every month. Talking is a great healer and I find these groups give me time to reflect and take comfort and strength from shared experience.
“I’ve marshalled at several Rennie Grove events, including their Chilterns 3 Peaks Challenge. It can be a great laugh and it’s actually quite sociable.
“As a volunteer marshall, you’re not only keeping participants safe and on track, but you can play a part in keeping them motivated. Although this can backfire, as I found at one Goodnight Walk when a participant didn’t seem to appreciate my pep talk in the early hours of the morning around the 11-mile mark!
“I’m looking forward to marshalling at the Chilterns Cycle Challenge: the route passes near where I live in Chinnor, but I don’t mind which stretch of route I cover. I’m hugely impressed by anyone that can cycle 10 miles, never mind the 35 and 75 mile marathon options on offer. But I’m glad I can be of assistance in a way that works for me. I urge anyone to come along and give it a go. It’s great to feel part of the Iain Rennie family and know you are making a difference to other families locally.”