Mother's death inspires effort to buy more 'cuddle beds' for Gander hospital
Beds will help palliative care patients gain comfort from loved ones
Megan Brown and her family are dealing with the loss of a mother, wife and friend by giving back.
Lisa Brown died of breast cancer on on February 9, 2017. She was 49 year old.
Her daughter, Megan Brown, says while the loss is difficult, the family wanted say thanks to those who helped her mother in her last days.
"The nurses came in, they had said 'We have this thing called a cuddle bed'. We never even knew it existed," said Brown.
"There was many times my dad said 'If the hospital bed was bigger, I would crawl up there right next to her.'"
But the hospital only has a couple of the special beds, so the nurses had to check. When the family found out they could get one, there were tears.
"My parents have been together 26 years. My dad thinking, 'I'll never be able to experience her next to me anymore. Like, this is the end. But once we got the cuddle bed, it was perfect."
'It was the biggest, most genuine smile we'd seen in days'- Megan Brown
The news gave her mother a last moment of hope too.
"I said 'They're getting you a cuddle bed so daddy can sleep next to you'. It was the biggest, most genuine smile we'd seen in days. She was just thrilled. She ate her supper that night. She was herself, her personality was there. It was just amazing."
The closure the cuddle bed gave to her family, especially her dad, was immeasurable, she said.
"When my father slept there that night, he told me, he said 'You know, she cuddled into me, she held my arm'. We were holding her hand of course, but I mean, she wasn't there because of the pain medication. So it was more us then her. But dad said, 'I wasn't me, it was all her'.
Giving joy to others
The Browns wanted to make sure other families could experience the same comfort at a terrible time.
"When my mom passed, we knew they [James Paton Memorial Hospital] only have a couple of cuddle beds. We really thought, maybe if we can raise the money for one, maybe two cuddle beds, it would just make the world of a difference to those people in their last moments".
The loss of their mother comes at a time when Megan Brown is planning a wedding for May and her sister Ashley is due to have her first child in July.
"My mom was so strong ... We really wanted to keep her name going. If we were to donate in her name, or fundraise in her name, it's still her way of giving joy to those who don't have anything to be happy for".
In just five days of starting The Power of Pink GoFundMe page, the family had raised $3,466 of its $10,000 goal.
With files from The Central Morning Show