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Marylene’s gift is a work of art

A very special gift has been installed in the grounds of St Michael’s having been left to the Hospice by a lady who loved spending time in our gardens.

The beautiful Walenty Pytel sculpture entitled Ascending, depicting a goose taking flight, now occupies pride of place beside our pond.

It was donated by Marylene Bourasseau who stayed on our Inpatient Unit for a couple of weeks at the beginning of last year and fell in love with the view from her room, looking out onto the Frome Valley towards Dormington.

“We were in the Hospice garden one day, beside the pond, when she suddenly said ,’Stop there’,” said her husband, Bob Shakeshaft.

“I asked her what was wrong, and she told me that spot was where she would like the goose sculpture, which was at home in our garden at the time, to be placed when she had gone.

“It was a spot she loved, looking down over the orchards and countryside beyond.

“She just thought it would be wonderful for people to benefit and get the same enjoyment from the sculpture, and the location, as she did.”
Marylene died at St Michael’s at the beginning of February 2021.

“The care at the hospice was just absolutely fantastic,” Bob added. “Marylene was so pleased she was there.”

Bob, a local property developer working closely with oak structures, also commissioned Nick Secker of local firm Wye Oak to make and build a pergola in memory of his wife. It was installed in the Hospice garden last summer.

“It was just my way of saying thank you really.

“I didn’t know much about St Michael’s before Marylene was admitted. Now, I’m only too happy to spread the word about the wonderful care they provide.”

Bob and his family have also helped raise a significant sum of money for St Michael’s in memory of Marylene.

An online fundraising page collected around £9,000 from friends and family.

Caption: Bob Shakeshaft beside the sculpture and (inset) Marylene.

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