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How do you sum up the life of your brother in a few words? You can't, but I'll try.

A great husband, father, brother, son and friend. An incredible intellect, a sharp wit, a voracious reader, an avid rugby fan, a wicked sense of humour, a walking musical encyclopedia. I could go on and on but they're just words. At the end of the day Mike was just like the rest of us, raising his family, going to work, living his life, until his world was ripped apart by being diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease.

What people found most inspirational about him was his attitude to the disease. The courage, dignity and intellect he brought to the fight. How he challenged convention and suggested alternative solutions at every stage. This attitude lead him to become involved in pioneering work with voice banking and eye tracking software, because he knew that as his disease progressed he would lose the ability to speak and eventually move. His determination not to lose the ability to communicate made him spend countless hours laboriously recording thousands of phrases which could later be used to allow him to communicate in his own voice. In fact his work was featured in a Radio 4 documentary, "Giving the Critic Back his voice", and in a Japanese TV doumentary. Sadly Mike died before he got to use this equipment, but his wife Joy, along with friends, family and work colleagues have raised thousands of pounds in order to buy this equipment, so that others may benefit.

Motor Neurone Disease is a horribly cruel disease with no known cause and no known cure. The average life expectancy from diagnosis is just three and a half years. At the moment, there is no hope if you're diagnosed. 

MND Scotland, The MND Association in the rest of the UK, and Research Motor Neurone in Ireland are three charities who are working to try to change this, both through research into the disease, and education and support for those affected.

Mike inspired us to take on this challenge, hopefully we can inspire you to donate to MND