A hospice near Lichfield is inviting people who have lost loved ones to celebrate their memories.

St Giles Hospice’s Light up a Life allows people to dedicate a message in memory of a loved one, which will be recorded in a Book of Memories.

Each life being remembered will be symbolised by a special light that will be switched on during services across the region.

Stephenie, Lewis and Alice Poppitt with a picture of Steve Poppitt

Light up a Life holds a special meaning for the Poppitt family from Lazy Hill, Aldridge, who will gather with friends and relatives to celebrate their memories of husband and father, Steve, whose funeral was held at Lichfield Cathedral two years ago.

Steve’s widow, Stephanie, his son, Lewis and daughter, Alice take great comfort in remembering the good times they had with Steve, a prison governor who was in the prime of life when he developed an incurable brain tumour.

He was cared for by St Giles Hospice in the days before his death, aged just 44, in May 2008.

Stephanie said:

“Light up a Life is a time for reflection, and because it’s at Christmas the event carries a genuinely loving feeling. It is the night when we can get together, family and friends, to remember the things we each loved about Steve.

“Steve was really good fun to be around and a wonderful husband and dad. He loved jokes and joking around and his young nieces and nephews used to call him Uncle Scar, like in the Lion King. He would come into the room and roar at them so that they all fell about screaming and laughing.”

Light up a Life gives the Poppitts an opportunity to gather with friends, family members and Steve’s former colleagues from HMP Blakenhurst, where he had been promoted to governor before his illness.

Steve had worked in the prison service for 23 years and more than 1,000 people attended his funeral at Lichfield Cathedral, where former colleagues formed a guard of honour.

Alice added:

“Dad didn’t want us spending Christmases, Father’s Days and birthdays at a graveside. Light up a Life gives us a special time when we can get together to remember him, and it is particularly meaningful because of our memories of Dad’s funeral at the cathedral.”

Those who would like to ensure their memories of a loved one are included in the Book of Memories, which will go on display at the Light up a Life services and at the hospice throughout 2011, can submit them online at www.stgileshospice.com/lightupalife or call 01543 432538.

Services will be held on:

  • December 5 – Four Oaks Methodist Church, Sutton Coldfield (indoor service) 6.30pm and St Modwen’s Church, Burton upon Trent (indoor service) 6pm.
  • December 12 – Lichfield Cathedral (outdoor service) 6pm and St Luke’s Church, Cannock (indoor service) 6pm,

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