Suad talks about the support her father received from Macmillan

Published: 24 July 2023

Suad, a trained orthopaedic nurse, cared for her father when he was diagnosed with liver cancer in 2020.

Suad’s father, Mohamed Omar was a former police officer who fled Somalia as a refugee in 1990. Suad talks about the support her father received from Macmillan Nurse Sarah Halls, that helped him realise his dying wish of being buried on the day that he died.

My dad was a very proud man, he was also kind and tolerant. His Somali upbringing meant he was very much the head of our household, but in a protective, caring way. He never wanted to talk about death and particularly not about his wishes for any resuscitation if it was ever to come to that. He gave no instructions directly to us, but we know that he discussed a ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ order with Sarah. Sarah brought in the Imam from Manchester Royal Infirmary to talk to him about it.

The Imam brought clarity. He said that within the Muslim faith what is concrete is that you don’t do the body harm. The act of resuscitation can cause great physical trauma and so my dad came to peace and agreed that he should not be resuscitated and allowed to slip away peacefully when the time came.

This was a great burden lifted from us as a family and it would never have been achieved without the Macmillan service’s relationship with the Iman and the Mosque.

"I have never felt more proud to be a nurse myself."

When he died I have no idea how Sarah managed to achieve his wish of being buried on the day. The communication between the GP and all the authorities meant he was laid to rest at Southern Cemetery near his home within a few hours.

Dad had even said that his clothes must go to charity. He would never have talked about these important things if it hadn’t been for Sarah.

My siblings from overseas had flown over and we were all with him when he died. He was in no pain and knew we were with him. For us, knowing that we carried out his final wishes means the world to us. I have no words to describe the beautiful care that my dad received from the team.


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