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Jose’s story

Shared by Jose’s daughter, Isa.

My Dad, Jose Carlos Rodrigues Cavaleiro, was a wonderful person; he loved life and his family even more. Sadly, in October 2021 Dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and we were told he only had a few months left to live. We were devastated, but he showed strength and happiness even though he was hurting because he didn’t want anyone to see his pain.

Dad was in and out of hospital as it was very hard to control his pain and sickness. The Hospital at Home team started visiting Dad at home to provide him with the medication he needed. We were so grateful for their visits, as it meant Dad didn’t have to travel to the hospital and could be at home with his family instead.

Dad became sicker and sicker, so the Hospital at Home team told us about Sobell House and Dad was admitted to the Hospice in June 2022. Dad was very well cared for by all the staff – he felt like he was at home and so did we. Dad enjoyed walking around the hospice and joking around with the staff. I know he was so grateful for their support.

The staff asked Dad what his final wishes were, and he said to marry my Mum! He didn’t think this would actually be possible, but Sobell House organised the whole wedding and it was absolutely beautiful. With no time to spare, on 16 June we rushed around Oxford looking for a white dress for Mum to wear. We were all laughing and so happy that the wedding was going to happen. Mum and Dad were married in the Sobell House garden and all of the staff congratulated them and made the day special.

Pictured: Jose and his family
Pictured: Jose in the garden
Pictured: Jose and his family

We visited Dad every day and spent as much time as we could with him. He liked being in the garden, taking in the beautiful surroundings and enjoying the peace and quiet. Everyone cared for Dad with such love; we think the staff are angels on earth.

On Dad’s last days of life, he told us he wanted to build a Sobell House in heaven with a beautiful garden surrounding it. These were his final words to us, and on 16 July 2022 we said goodbye to him for the last time. Dad’s room number was also 16 which felt very meaningful.

Thank you to everyone at Sobell House for all of your support and everything you’ve done for us, and your continuous help through the grieving process. We are so grateful.

Thank you so much to Isa for kindly sharing her family’s experience of Sobell House.

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