Obituary - Graham Stephens
OUR DOGS was sorry to learn that Arden Grange’s Graham Stephens lost his battle with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia on Tuesday 10th November.
Graham was diagnosed earlier this year and, after a bout of aggressive chemo-therapy, managed to obtain a good level of remission which allowed him to leave hospital in May. Graham was determined to try and regain his strength for all the meetings and events he wished to attend both here and abroad. He achieved his goals during the Summer and Autumn, spending a lot of time in his and Wendy’s beloved Germany, visiting close friends and their German Shepherds, and enjoying a holiday with Emma, Terry and grand-daughter Amelie in beautiful Bavaria.
Wendy says: ‘He was very proud of his family and it gave him great pleasure seeing our son Jon marry Anna on 18th September. It was a really memorable day and evening - we even managed for my mother to attend in her wheelchair.
‘Whether it be regarding business matters or our deep interest in German Shepherds, Graham always exhibited a fair and balanced viewpoint. He constantly used these qualities in an effort to achieve his dream of unity in the German Shepherd fraternity, education for future generations of Shepherd lovers, judges and exhibitors and, most importantly, mandatory health screening for these wonderful dogs that have been a large part of our lives for 43 years.’
On September 24th another bone marrow biopsy was taken which still showed good remission, so Graham and Wendy went to Germany again, this time for the German Schutzhund Championships followed by the World Schutzhund Championships one week later. Ten days after their return, on 24th October, Graham started to feel mildly unwell with an infection, and was immediately admitted to hospital. He met his illness with stoicism and courage throughout, always thinking positively and never wavering in his determination to beat his disease and return home.
Wendy ends with some very fitting words: ‘Graham was a man of integrity, a great leader, wise adviser and good friend who has left a very large gap in our hearts and lives. His greatest legacy is the family that he adored. Our business and workmates - our wonderful 'extended family' - were also very close to his heart. We will now continue, in the path he set, to try and ensure that he would have been equally as proud of us as we are of him’
Deepest sympaties to Wendy, Emma, Jonno, Terry, Anna and Amelie.
Graham’s funeral will be held on Tuesday 24th November at 12.20pm you will be warmly welcomed at The Kingswood Chapel, Worthing Crematorium, Horsham Road, Findon, Near Worthing, West Sussex BN14 0RG - and afterwards in celebrating his life at Ardenburg, London Road, Albourne, West Sussex BN6 9BJ.
It would help with catering arrangements at Ardenburg by mailing email@example.com please or by telephoning her direct line 01273 836330.
The family would prefer everyone to bring just one flower to go with Graham, and if you wish to make a donation to a Charity on his behalf these are two that they have chosen who would be very grateful for your generosity: 'The GSD Welfare Fund' - please send your donations to Julia O'Gorman, Arden Grange, London Road, Albourne, West Sussex BN6 9BJ who will forward them to the Charity.
'Graham Stephens Forget Me Not Fund' (which is part of Leukaemia Research) - their web address is www.lrf.org.uk/en/1/fmnfdonate.html and donations can be made online, by telephone or post. Please remember to tick the Gift Aid box, which will add 28p for every £1 donated.
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