Wednesday, 23 April 2014


Above is a link to the audio of Harry's funeral service. I know a few may be interested, whom were not there. Sorry, though that the photo slide show cannot be heard! But you can visualise Harry to the music, 'sing, by The Military Wives'. I felt the words of this song were fitting and the lines in particular 'you brought hope, you brought light, conquered fear, no it wasn't always easy. Stood your ground, kept your faith. don't you see right now the world is listening to what we say'. 

Harry you were feisty like your mum and well the Dedman/Buckley clan.

These are the words I gave the curate John Parkin to read out at Harry's funeral for me. I chose not to speak, as I would have, had to remain composed and in a clinical state about what is the saddest thing any mother has to do, sit through her son's funeral. 

Words by mum

Harry has always been a strong character. In fact when I was pregnant with Callum, friends would say that number 2 surely couldn't be quite so active, Callum in fact was more active walking at 8 1/2 months, but that's another story.
The determination and strength of character that Harry developed in his toddler years, was to see him through the rest of his short, but full life. Harry became poorly in October 2011 and it wasn't until 12 th November 2011 that we heard the words cancer and not just any old cancer, Neuroblastoma cancer. Harry had to undergo one of the most aggressive treatment protocols there is. He had 15 months of treatment in total. Harry would bounce back after each step of the treatment and be ready to rejoin his friends, playing out as any child his age did. 
When we found out that Harry had relapsed disease in March 2013, we were determined to have as many adventures as possible and boy did we pack them in. Those memories and happy days will remain with us forever. 
You, battled to the very end my dear, beautiful Harry, still wanting to finish the model army barracks we made. The only day you remained in bed was the day you died. 
You remind me of the knight from 'Monty Python and the holy grail', the one whom had his arms and legs chopped off, but was still determined to fight. You, my brave boy was on so many, many drugs towards the end and was so very weak, but your mind was still active and you could still direct everybody even if your body could not function for you. 
We love you to the stars and back and a zillion times round the world and back again, always and forever in our hearts. 

So Harry from the moment you took your last breath, we continued to do our best for you. Our McMillan nurse drove us to Martin House hospice. No body bags needed, as you sat on my lap and I was able to cuddle you, free from pain, all the way to where you could lay to rest, in a bedroom, kept at a cold temperature to preserve you. Your daddy, carried you from the car to your bed and we made you comfortable. There we could visit you frequently, read the many cards we received, particularly the ones that your friends wrote. You stayed there, until the evening before your funeral service. We chose a red coffin for you and we decorated it with disney planes wall stickers. We know you would have approved. Daddy lifted you carefully into your coffin and helped to carry you out of Martin House into the car, whereby you would be taken back to Otley and the chapel of rest at Pickles funeral directors. Callum and I saw you for the last time too and we both cried at the finality of this poignant moment. 

Having had much deliberation over the music to which you should go down the isle to and return to, we finally chose music which felt fitting. We did have some black comedy moments, when deciding and wondered about starting on 'Celine Dion's - your heart must go on', then slipping into ,'staying alive' by the bee gees, as your coffin gets taken into the air on strings, as the coffin bearers do the staying alive jig, then the coffin returns to the bearers and the music goes back to Celine Dion! Fortunately, we didn't have enough time to organise such a stage production! But I think you would have smiled and danced in your coffin! 

However, I felt what we did organise and put together was a true reflection on your life and was such a beautiful service. It could not have been better. Your friends James and Rosie read 'no matter what' beautifully and it felt so fitting to include your friends in the service, as it did when the children waived flags to 'shine Jesus shine', with the words, 
'Lord, the light of your love is shining,
In the midst of the darkness, shining' 
Reflecting the darkness we feel at losing you, but knowing light will shine through this. 

We would like to thank all and every one of you for attending Harry's service and for the £1021 collected at the end of his service. 
This will be split between the church and The Thomas Ball Children's cancer charity. Some will go to research and the online just giving page will go towards the holiday lodges that the charity have.

Harry's party at High Royds, was a huge success too. Many of Harry's friends were there and enjoyed the food, bouncy castle, arts and crafts and the balloon release. In fact we have had confirmation where 3 out of the 200 balloons landed. One in Suffolk near where I grew up, one in Southern Germany and one in Austria. Harry, you must have been Flying high with the balloons to get them so far. This was truly magnificent to know they reached other parts of Europe!

Your book was also sold at your party and we now need a 3 rd reprint! We have sold nearly 200 books, raised £1257 including gift aid for Nuzzlet's farm. Had a further check for £160 for the farm and have kept £400 in cash to pay for another 200 books! 

The Otley Lions book shop, is selling Harry's book, it is based in Otley, on Mercury Row, opposite the solicitors Newstead and Walker. 

We have had some media interest in the book too, Harry would love that, he liked being famous, following his few seconds of fame in 'The Secret Millionaire' filmed in April 2012! He was in LGI having his stem cells harvested, when the film crew appeared! 

So Harry, we are at a new chapter in our lives - learning to live without out. This is probably the hardest chapter of all and the one we need the most courage for. Your smile beams at us from all corners of our house as we catch glimpses of the many photos we have and we have a hole in our hearts now, I guess time will heal this, but there will always be a corner of our heart missing, because we no longer have you on earth with us. 

We have your ashes back with us and it feels you are home again. We will scatter you, when the time is right. We have initiated getting a bench on the chevin for us to sit on and ponder your life with us and take in the view we have there, in front of your tree. A truly special place. 

So, my dear Harry, I hope you are flying high and exploring the world above us and ordering all the other angels about! There are many dear angels up there, many your age, taken too soon.

Fly Harry Fly! X 

1 comment:

  1. Hi Sarah. I have just heard you and Janey on the radio. My word. You are so courageous and such a shining example to us. Stephen and I feel so priviledged to know you and to have known Harry who will never be forgotten. My thoughts and prayers are withbyou now and always. God bless. Love Margaret xxxxxxxx