“Louise was my wife, my soulmate and most of all, she was my best friend.”
Just a year after getting married Louise Jones was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2004. She was aged just 26.
Over 18 years she had several operations, bouts of radiotherapy and chemotherapy and numerous hospital visits. She carried on working until 2019 and completed a business degree while recovering from multiple surgeries.
Unfortunately, just before Christmas 2021 Louise suffered a seizure and her health began to deteriorate. She came to us at the hospice in April and died at the hospice on May 16th 2022.
Her husband Kevin, 49, has kindly agreed to share their story with us.
“Louise is originally from Ashton-in-Makerfield which is where I first met her, she grew up and lived all her life there until we bought our house in Winstanley in 1997.
“Louise had a couple of different jobs throughout her working life, mostly as office administrators. When we first met she worked for Woodward’s Trucks in Wigan followed by ICL in Warrington. From there she moved to the Department for Work and Pensions where she stayed until she retired on ill health grounds in 2019.
“Louise was a tremendously loving and proud mother, she raised and supported our son Jacob in everything he did despite the struggles she was going through. She would take him to karate, then guitar lessons and for many years transport him backwards and forwards to Wigan Little Theatre where he was a member. Her help and involvement with this led Jacob to such a love of drama and theatre that it led on to him completing a degree in Drama and is currently about to start Teacher Training at Manchester Metropolitan University.”
It was when Louise collapsed in the gym in 2004 that she was diagnosed with a brain tumour and had surgery. However, in 2006 it was found the tumour had grown back so she had more surgery and a course of radiotherapy. During her recovery Louise studied Business and Information Technology at Liverpool Hope University, graduating in July 2008.
Afterwards Louise had ten years of stable scan results but in 2016 the tumour had started to change so she had further surgery followed by another when a scan in November 2017 showed yet more changes.
Kevin said: “Afterwards Louise was temporarily paralysed down her right side. She remained in hospital for 40 days where they slowly helped her to learn to walk again and use her right side of her body. She never fully regained the use of her right arm and then underwent a 12-month course of chemotherapy.
“It was at this time that Louise first received help from the staff at the hospice as an outpatient. Louise had help from physiotherapists and occupational therapists at home, as well as also coming into the hospice for acupuncture, which helped her greatly.”
On December 21, 2021 Louise had a seizure and was admitted to hospital. Her tumour had changed and she had her fifth surgery on January 25th then started chemotherapy on 21st February. Not long afterwards Louise suffered a bleed on her brain and was admitted to Royal Liverpool Hospital until she moved to the hospice Inpatient Unit on April 4th.
Kevin said: “It was a difficult move and she suffered multiple seizures upon arrival. The nurses treated her fantastically and reassured me as it was obviously very traumatic.
“We spent the last weeks of Louise’s life living at the Hospice. On sunny days we sat outside in the garden – chatting together and enjoying the never-ending supply of tea and biscuits the nurses and volunteers gave us.
“The staff spent time chatting and joking around with us. Because Louise was so young, they’d tell her, “You’ve got the best bum in Wigan!” which she of course loved. They brought lightness to the situation which made us feel so at ease. And when they heard about Mylo, Louise’s companion dog, they insisted we bring him into the Hospice. Having him up on the bed for Louise to cuddle was so lovely.
“Louise never once gave up and fought as hard as she could to stay with us.”
Kevin and Jacob made a donation of £905 to the hospice in memory of Louise following a collection at her funeral.