The co-founder of Derian House has paid tribute to his ‘rock’ who helped him set up the children’s hospice in Lancashire.
Ian Haydock’s wife, Marylyn, known more commonly as Barbara, died at Salford Royal Hospital following a short battle with leukaemia on Thursday, June 6 - the same day as fellow founder Margaret Vinten also died.
Whilst Miss Vinten was integral in officially setting Derian House up, it was Ian’s initial idea to provide a children’s hospital after his brother, Derek, who had Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) died in 1969, aged 19.
He started a fund-raising campaign in 1991 and Miss Vinten stepped in to make his dream a reality.
Ian, of Eccleston, said that his wife was with him every step of the way whilst trying to set Derian House up in Chorley.
He said: “Marylyn helped me from the start and everywhere I went, she did and helped me, whether it was writing letters of collecting raffle prizes.
“It meant an awful lot to me that she was there to support me. I could not have managed it without her. It was her strength that kept me going."
Speaking for himself and his two children, Lesley and Gareth and grand-daughter Carrie-Ann, he added: “We love her to bits and beyond. She was our rock and someone to lean on. She was everything to us and we will certainly miss her.”
Marylyn, who had supported many charities and worked in various charity shops across Chorley, fell ill over the Easter weekend.
The 71-year-old had suffered a fall and was diagnosed with leukaemia.
Ian added: “It was a terrible shock. Her blood was thinning and that caused the fall, From there, her vital organs were starting to shut down. She was given aggressive chemotherapy and was in hospital for 10 weeks.”
Ian also paid tribute to Margaret Vinten, who died last week, aged 80.
He said: “How uncanny that they died on the same day. It was such a shock to hear she had died. I would like to thank her for everything she did for Derian House and the support she gave me. She deserves so much respect. Our thoughts go out to her family, because we know what they must be going through.”
Marylyn’s funeral will be at St Mary’s Church, in Eccleston, on June 27, at 1.30pm, followed by the crematorium in Charnock Richard.
Donations to Derian House would be welcome.