LINDA MAGISTRIS - CEO/FOUNDER
I first met my partner Graham when I was in the original cast of the BBC Series, Grange Hill and he was one of our Directors and we met again 30 years later, purely by accident.
I had been running a varied portfolio of businesses over the years since we first worked together, from a Wedding Consultancy to Vintage Tea Rooms, and Graham had been working in TV and Film. We spent the following 8 years together until he was diagnosed with a rare soft tissue sarcoma, an agressive form of cancer, and he died five and half months later.
The 3 years since his death have been enlightening and a real journey of discovery, waking up to the reality of life and death, and realising the urgent need to join the dots across the country, to bring us altogether to share our stories and to try to make things a little better for all of us who lose someone we love. I am passionate about trying to ensure no-one falls through the net, and have dedicated the past year, to setting up this charity and I am very proud of everything we have achieved in such a short space of time.
HELEN CHURCHILL - TRUSTEE
I was widowed in January 2015 when my husband Iain died from a rare form of lymphoma at the age of 49. Myself and my 3 children have had to try and cope and live with the death of a very much loved man. In my experience grief is an ever changing landscape. Help and support are needed at the beginning when grief is painful and raw, but it can be equally needed further down the line.
The amazing organisations and charities out there aren't always easy to locate which is why I feel the Good Grief Trust is such a vital resource, it will literally signpost you to any form of bereavement support you may need. I am delighted to be involved with and a trustee of this wonderful charity and to think it is providing the help and hope to others that are going through the utter trauma of losing someone dear, is incredible.
JAN SOULSBY SECRETARY - TRUSTEE
My life was ticking along as normal; work, three teenagers, husband, mortgage - just like everyone else. Then on Mother's Day 2015 my husband suffered a massive heart attack at home and died on the floor in front of me.
I performed CPR and mouth to mouth trying to keep him alive until the paramedics arrived who were exceptional - we were rushed to the hospital but nothing could be done. The time between hearing him fall and returning home was about three hours and I returned home with nothing other than a green plastic bag of his belongings; a list of funeral directors; and an explanation of how I register a death - and our lives were shattered.
I was stunned by the fact that no-one was there to help me and that needs to change. This is why I am delighted to be supporting the work of The Good Grief Trust as Trustee.
SIAN DUDDY - TRUSTEE
The crushing devastation of bereavement came to me and my children in February 2014 when my beloved husband lost his short battle with cancer at age 44. He put us and our feelings first right up until I held him for his last breath at The Hospice of St Francis. He was a brave and remarkable man and so very loved. We have amazing family and friends who rallied round us and there were offers of support from various organisations, including the wonderful Hospice, but I simply did not have the clarity to accept or reach out at that time.
Five years on and many things brought me to this incredible charity - The Good Grief Trust. Wherever you may be on your grief journey GGT can signpost you to the help you need, where you need it and offer hope and support from those who just ‘get it’. I am thrilled to be part of a charity I firmly believe in with a team of incredible, courageous people who want to help shine the beacon of hope to all who need it.