TAKEN FROM MY FACEBOOK PAGE:
20 July · Dubrovnik never disappoints-I love it here and just sitting dangling my feet in the crystal clear water has calmed (and cooled) me down. Everytime I come here I see something new…..I love the narrow, steep alleyways and I love the drawbridge you have to cross to enter the 13th century walled town. I love the fact that you can safely fill your water-bottle from any of the numerous fountains and walk on stones made shiny by millions of feet over hundreds of years. I love the fact that the guy in this outdoor restaurant remembered me and called me by name, welcoming me as an old friend, insisting I have a free beer……and you know what? There are times when only an ice-cold beer in a place where someone knows you, will do. Cheers x
23 July · I don’t want to see ONE single comment on here. I mean it. Or I WILL delete you.
23 July · Copied from my son Scott’s site:
‘I’ve spoken to everyone I can think of who should know and so I hope nobody finds out this way but I fear that for some this will come as a horrible shock. My brother passed away two days ago in Thailand.
Arrangements are being made for his return to the UK as soon as possible and I speak for both myself and my mother, and all our family, when I say your kind words have helped and are helping us through a very difficult time.
Those who will need to know funeral arrangements, I will be in contact when more details are available.
I understand people need to grieve as do I, and I only ask that if anyone needs to make contact they do via me, and obviously only if necessary.
25 July · There are no words I can find to express how heartbroken Scott and I are. Our hearts are in a million pieces and even if we may one day manage to put them back together, there will always and forever be a massive, vital piece still missing from them and our lives are never going to be the same. Never.
The kindness and compassion being shown to us is breath-taking by family and friends….and total strangers.
We have had hundreds and hundreds of messages and I simply don’t have the energy to reply individually so please forgive me, but I know you’ll understand.
For all the food, baking, cooking, shopping, lifts and million other things you are doing for us I will never be able to thank you adequately.
To Ross’s friends who are as heartbroken as we are I am so very proud of you all-I have watched you all grow up from little boys into wonderful young men and Ross would be so proud of you all now and especially the way that you are looking after me and his darling brother.
To Phil in Thailand thank you SO much for everything you have done over there for Ross and his heartbroken Dad-thank you, from the bottom of my heart, thank you and to all his friends over there, I know you are all in shock as we all are.
I have just got off the phone with Alex, Ross’s Dad who is bereft. But he and Phil have now got all the documentation needed to repatriate our darling boy, who may be flying home to us on Tuesday or Wednesday. I will let you all know the funeral arrangements when we have them.
And Scott. Oh my darling Scott…you are my rock and what you have done over the last few dreadful days-from letting people know, talking to Embassy officials, the Home Office, International Funeral Directors and just making sure Ross gets home safely to us as quickly as possible and saving me from having to do any of it-all while still visiting your Grandmother in hospital every day and keeping this awful news from her until I could be there to tell her with you…..you have a strength in you that I didn’t realise you had and I love you so very much and am so so proud of the man you’ve become.
And Ross. My darling, darling boy with the big heart, big grin, big talent and big hugs….you should have no regrets. You did everything. You tried everything. And you went everywhere. You LIVED your life to the absolute fullest and we told each other almost every day that we loved each other-for that I am eternally grateful. You knew you were loved and you always will be.
Sleep well my angel and I’ll have another ‘Rossy-hug’ one day.
I love you.
Your broken-hearted Mum ❤
26 July At 3’10 when we acknowledge the orchestra, they stand and far left you’ll see my darling boy Ross on guitar…and there’s a moment…..where he looks at me and I look at him and he grins at me….I’ll never forget that night-or the party after! Swansea Girls finale at Swansea Grand Theatre 2008
“Swansea Girls” the finale to the celebrated musical “Swansea Girls” performed at Swansea Grand Theatre in 2007 and 2008. Written by Lynne Mackay. The…
28 July Scott has had a call from the International Funeral Directors who are working for us and they now have Ross in their care.
They couldn’t get him on a flight tomorrow, but have provisionally booked him onto a flight on Thursday back to the UK and they will be bringing him all the way directly to Swansea, then hand his care over to Websters in Marlbourough Road Chapel of Rest.
There will still be British formalities to then be addressed, so we don’t know yet when we can go ahead and organise his funeral.
We will let you all know when he is back in Swansea ❤
28 July · My very dear friend Kevin has known the boys since they were little-and they were both thrilled to bits to learn that their Mum actually KNEW ‘Clown Kev’!
He has very kindly agreed to officiate at Ross’ funeral as he is also an ordained Minister.
Here is Kev singing so beautifully in the original production of my musical ‘Swansea Women’ at the Grand Theatre-I am playing the piano….Ross is on guitar.
This is how I imagine my darling Scott must have felt exactly one week ago when he had to tell me the dreadful news.
From my heart to yours, my darling boys ❤
29 July · Ross will be making this same flight and will be arriving in the UK at 0700 tomorrow morning-for his friends who want to track his progress. The flight is TG910/30 ❤ xxx
29 July · Swansea · We have just received a beautiful potted yellow rose bush from Guernsey Flowers, but sadly, there was no card, so we don’t know who it’s from?
Yellow roses are my favourite and Ross bought me many, many bunches-usually to soften me up before telling me something he’d done, bless him.
On the day of the funeral we are asking that those who wish to do so all wear a yellow rose,,,,,for Ross xxx
30 July · Ross is in the UK. His journey on to Swansea won’t start for a few hours yet but soon he truly will be on his way home to us heart emoticon
30 July · We’ve just heard that our darling boy left London 30 minutes ago and is now on the M4 travelling travelling towards his beloved Wales and even more beloved Swansea-he should arrive in about 3 hours. Safe journey my darling-nearly home xxx
30 July · I’m so glad that the sun is shining to welcome my beautiful Ross home
31 July · Swansea · Just to let you all know, Ross is safely in our Chapel of Rest.
The Coroner rang Scott this morning and all is ok-she just needs a few more details from Thailand and is doing everything she can to avoid ordering a 2nd post-mortem.
A few things didn’t add up to her, but after speaking to Scott she said that made more sense so she wants to see the CCTV footage he told her about.
She was really lovely.
As today is Friday, the offices in Thailand are already closed so it will be next week now before things can move forward…and may well be another week after that before we can finally arrange his funeral.
For those who don’t know and are afraid to ask, Ross was on his scooter and not travelling very fast, but crashed into the back of a parked truck. They said he was dead on impact.
However, when Philip and Alex saw CCTV footage, it looked to them like Ross suffered a seizure first, then crashed. That made more sense to the Coroner in view of the findings of his injuries that she had in front of her. She is now requesting the CCTV footage and a map of the accident-site.
Ross was prone to seizures-particularly if he was over-tired, excited or stressed.
And he WAS excited, because he was not only finally going to see Angkor Wat in Cambodia with his Dad who was treating him to a holiday, but after that, he was coming home. He’d decided that that was what he wanted to do after coming home in March for a wedding and I was thrilled.
I am praying that he DID have a seizure and was already unconscious before hitting that truck, so he would have not known anything about it.
Scott and I will let you know more when we can.
Thank you is inadequate for what everyone close to us has been doing-way too many to name, but I will NEVER be able to repay the absolute love, kindness, compassion and humanity that you have shown to me, Scott and Mam.
It’s going to be a very hard few weeks, but with you here, we WILL get through…and Ross, oh my lovely boy, you would be SO proud of everyone you love x
31 July · The Coroner has seen more evidence and agrees it was a seizure so has told us there is no need for Ross to undergo a 2nd post-mortem. An inquest will be opened next week but she said it will only last minutes and be straight-forward, then the death-certificate will be issued. We can then register Ross’ death. Oh I can’t believe I’m saying these words.
I have spoken to Websters who have our boy in their Chapel of Rest and they will call on Monday to arrange a meeting. Richard will be handling it-the same lovely man who looke after my darling father so well and with such dignity 12 years ago.
Once Scott and I have met with Richard, we will have a date to give you all xxx
1 August · BlackBerry Smartphones App · Last August when Ross came home, he went to Marks and Spencers to buy some trousers and when he got home, he said ‘I got you this cos I know you love your candles-they’re selling them in M&S for Rememberence Day….(Long pause)……….I wouldn’t have got one, but the girl on the till was hot!’
1 August · Today was very hard…..think that’s the most visitors we’ve had in one day, but how brave you all are to make such a difficult visit-some of you for the 2nd or 3rd time-thank you so much-it means a lot. To Ross’ young friends: most of you have never had to deal with a tragedy like this before-you are simply wonderful and I know now why Ross loved you so-and you will all always have a special place in my heart xxx
2 August · Just spent 2 hours talking to a reporter from the Evening Post (at home)…..surreal
2 August · The EP photographer has been and AGAIN, I can’t tell you how lovely and kind he was. I found it hard though and when he took one of me holding Ross’ picture I totally lost it….not because of him, but because of WHY we were doing it. This is all just so hard
2 August · BlackBerry Smartphones App · The article about my lovely Ross will be in tomorrow’s Evening Post and on their website from 0630 tomorrow morning. I’ve read it and it’s my words-i hope I did him proud.
2 August · The morning after I’d got the news about Ross, well as you can imagine, I hadn’t slept a wink and at about 0400 I went upstairs and out on deck to get some fresh air. I sat and watched the sun come up and it felt very spiritual. I thought to myself ‘I need to remember this’ so I went and got my tablet and took this photograph x
3 August · For those of you living away, you can read about my lovely Ross here, where you can also leave comments:
He made the front page x
3 August · Daily Mail Online · MailOnline….didn’t speak to them-got my sddress wrong-left there 2008….got other info from google……but i don’t give a damn. The more peopke who know about my darling Ross and how lovely he was, the better x
British musician, Ross Mackay, 27, died after suffering what is believed to be an epileptic fit while driving a moped in the city of Pattaya in Thailand, where he had…
Oh bless him ♡
Ross Mackay, son of Swansea Girls writer Lyn Mackay, has died in a road accident involving his moped and a truck in Thailand
4 August · Ross in my classroom at Dylan Thomas School, rehearsing for ‘Swansea Girls’ and playing his precious ‘Black Beauty’ x
Matt-you have been at Scott’s side for more years than I care to remember, becoming one of Ross’ best mates as well. The moment my darling Scott’s life changed forever, you were there immediately for him and stayed there through those awful days until I got home. And now you tell us that you’ve had a star named after Ross! I really am lost for words. For the many visitors who met you today it is obvious that you and Scott are cut from the same cloth and I love you for loving both my boys xxx
5 August · Scott and I are will be unavailable this morning due to meeting with our funeral director. I hope this afternoon, we will be able to give you the date x
5 August · Just found this video from the infamous holiday in Turkey I took Ross and Rhodri on in 2004…love hearing his voice and seeing him in yet another cowboy hat….he really did think he was Indiana Jones
5 August ·Now that we’ve spoken to Alex (Ross’ Dad), we can now tell you that Ross’ funeral will take place on Friday 21st August, 12 noon at Morriston Crematorium-to which everyone is welcome, with a private, invitation-only service at Marlborough Road Chapel of Rest prior to that at 1045 (due to limited space there).
More details will follow later about his wake-to which you are all welcome.
That will be exactly one month to the day that he died, which I can’t actually believe….as it feels like months and months have passed already
5 August · Ross won an Eisteddfod poetry prize in Olchfa when he was in Year 7.
His English teacher at the time was Janet, who I later met, got to know and became close friends with, when she moved to my school to teach.
She wrote me a beautiful letter recently, recalling one of the lines that she still remembers Ross wrote in that poem about Swansea: “drunk men singing the wrong words to the right tunes”.
Today, my amazing friend Janette brought me this silver heart engraved with “wrong words…….right tune”
6 August · Swansea · I just wanted to say another ‘thank you’ to the 130 of you who have been brave enough to visit and cry with us, the 200+ who have sent us beautiful cards and the 40+ of you who have sent such stunning floral tributes….not to mention all the cooked dinners, the food-boxes, the cakes, the beer and wine (!) the candles…the beautiful letters and emails, the gifts, the thoughtful messages on here, the lifts…and oh, I could go on and on and on.
‘Thank-you’ once again seems and feels inadequate for what you are doing for us-and for Mam too and we will never, ever forget your kindnesses.
We face a fairly awful 2-week wait now until we can say goodbye ‘officially’ to our beautiful Ross, but with your help, we will get through it-you know who you are.
With all our love,
Scott and Lyn xxx
6 August · http://www.southwales-eveningpost.co.uk/Funeral-date-set-city-musician-died-Thailand/story-27553408-detail/story.html
6 August · Up all night…still can’t shift this nasty headache either-had it since Sunday now…so gave in and went to see my doc first thing….it’s all just the effects of shock but my bp is a bit low as well…so gave me some good advice on which meds to use together that I know agree with me and hoping a day of those mean I get some sleep tonight x
6 August · Very sorry, but I’m just not up to any visitors today-sorry to the ones who rang me yesterday to arrange, but these meds are kicking in and feeling very sleepy x
7 August · Following Ross’ cremation (at 12 on 21st August), we invite all of you to join us and celebrate his beautiful life at Swansea Rugby Club (St Helen’s), right through into the evening.
I have told the boys to bring their guitars.
At dusk we will release a lantern for him.
We are asking for donations in lieu of flowers to help us have 2 permanent memorials for Ross in Swansea and in Pattaya, to mark his life.
We would also like everyone who wishes to, to wear a yellow rose to his funeral.
I have just had to write his obituary……something no mother should ever have to do for their child x
7 August ·We’d gone to support Scott at Penllergaer Primary Sports Day and Scott won a race, so he was getting lots of kisses and cuddles….feeling left-out a bit and not to be outdone, Ross came stomping over and plonked a huge kiss on me…and for once, my Dad was in the right place at the right time with his camera
7 August · Thank you for the hundreds of beautiful letters, texts, emails, fb messages and comments-hard to write, harder to read, even harder to believe
Today has been a particularly bad day and full of tears
16 August at 22:10 · Swansea ·12 years ago today we lost my wonderful Dad-
Malachey Lawrence Sinnott….
next Friday we’ll say goodbye to his adored Grandson, my son
Malachey Ross Mackay
Look after him, Dad 💔
18 August at 11:54 · Swansea · Gave up trying to sleep just after 1 this morning and came downstairs. Sorted all the flowers out-quite sad having to put some of them out into the garden refuse recycling bags-4 full bags of flowers out there now for collection.
Did a few other quiet jobs so I didn’t wake Scott.
Had another good cry and sob over some memories of my lovely boy.
Then got dressed, had breakfast and went to Uplands to get Ross’ picture enlarged and framed for Friday.
Carried on into town and got display boards for the wake and guitar strings for his Gibson, bless him-had a sad talk with the boys in Cranes who are lovely and knew Ross well.
Then rang the hospital for the 2nd time and this time, Mam was back from theatre and all seems well-she’s sleeping-huge relief to know she was back in her room.
Funeral Director is here soon, then I’ll go down the hospital to see Mam and hopefully see the Doctor as well.
Here is the paperwork from Matt’s amazing gesture to name a star after Ross in the Capricorn constellation…so special-and so are you, Matt-Ross would love this! He really would
19 August at 16:03 · Edited · Today has been one of the worst days of my life-with at least one more to come. Had a funny turn in Debenhams. So grateful that Julie rang me and realised I needed rescuing and did exactly that. Now it’s going to get weird…..
She took me to the Chattery in Uplands as I had to collect Ross’ photograph for the crem.
We were at the back and I sat facing the door, she had her back to it.
One of the ladies who works there was asked by a large party n the front part, to take their group-photograph, so was facing me.
I looked up and saw not her, but my Dad!!!
I whispered to Julie “look behind you over your left shoulder” and she went white and said “OMG-it’s your Dad!!!”
Then everything just snapped back to normal and the lady was herself again and went back to work.
Every hair on my neck and arms stood up.
Very strange but Julie said it was ‘a cwtch from your Dad’ x
20 August at 03:08 · Given up trying to sleep…feeling really, really sick to my stomach..having a cup of tea with sugar, 2 plain biscuits and a yoghurt in the hope they settle it a bit…..because there are no tablets to take to cure this frown emoticon
20 August at 10:10 · Sadly, although my Mum is a little better today, she suffered a serious setback this week which means that she will be in hospital longer than expected and therefore, she will be unable to attend her beloved Grandson Ross’ funeral tomorrow. My wonderful Aunt Marie (Mam’s sister) is going to go and sit with her.
20 August at 13:34 · BlackBerry Smartphones App · Mam is looking so much better-am SO relieved I can’t begin to tell you….but saying goodbye until after the funeral was very, very hard for both of us x
20 August at 14:54 · My tummy is doing back-flips as the time is nearly here for me to go and sit for a while with my beautiful boy at the Chapel of Rest
20 August at 15:35 · Swansea · Crying again….this time because of all the profile pics I’m starting to see that have been changed and are now a yellow rose in honour of Ross……I am SO touched-thank you x
21 August at 09:31 · Swansea · As I was getting ready for the worst day of my life, the same song-lyrics keep playing in my head “my hands are shaking and my knees are weak, I can’t seem to stand on my own two feet”….’All Shook Up’ is about right….
Totally overwhelmed and filled with immense pride to see my Facebook newsfeed absolutely covered in yellow roses-you will NEVER know what that did for my heart when I got up this morning and saw it….
Later on, I will post my tribute to Ross, but now, for the first time, let me say the words I’ve been dreading….
Rest in Eternal Peace, my beautiful, beautiful boy x
22 August at 08:40 · My son Scott yesterday walking in front of his brother, dressed in his Mackay kilt. He really is my Braveheart
22 August at 09:16 ·As promised, here is the transcript of my words yesterday:
LETTER FOR ROSS
My darling Ross, from the moment all 12lbs 10ozs of you bounced into our lives and you crawled in your incubator, I knew you were going to be special-and I was right.
You idolised Scott from the moment you clapped eyes on him and he adored you right back. This never changed and it was a source of great pride to me that the 2 of you were always so close.
You were REAL boys-into everything, doing everything, getting dirty and loving it and constantly ending up in casualty with some injury or other-like the time you ended up there when you were about 3 or 4, after breaking your toe playing ‘catch’ with your brother. The Doctor looked confused and so I told him to ask you WHAT you were playing ‘catch’ with…..back came the reply…….…’breeze-blocks!!’
You were both fearless…although where Scott would hurtle down a hill, jump a wall then realise that he probably shouldn’t have done that….you would follow him, hurtle down the hill…stop…look at the wall…think ‘I probably shouldn’t do this’…then do it anyway.
You were SO very close to Grandma and Grandad, having a very unique and special relationship with them and as you grew old enough to understand, you were absolutely thrilled to discover that you were named ‘Malachey’ after Grandad-in fact you went through a phase of wanting to be called ‘Mal’ just like him.
You loved your Auntie Jayne to bits and when she met and married Uncle Peter, you loved him too. You were so proud along with Scott, to be ring-bearers at their wedding and looked so smart in your morning suits that I thought I would burst with pride.
Ross, you would be SO very proud of what Scott has one for you and I in the last few weeks-he has been nothing short of heroic and through his tireless efforts, he got you home to us quickly and safely-and I know that you would have done exactly the same for him.
From a very early age you would ‘plinky-plonk’ away on the piano and pick out tunes-thinking that this was normal and that everybody could do it-it was years before you realised that you actually DID have a talent-you’d never take MY word for it.
It was a constant source of joy to me that both you and your brother were so musical-you on guitar and piano and Scott on drums and guitar and both with great singing voices.
Although both of you had played in the pit of the Grand Theatre with me for some shows, when all 3 of us finally got to play together on stage at the Grand Theatre-funnily enough, with our dear friend Kev, well those concerts were very rare and special moments that I will never ever forget…..although I did question the decision of the theatre-manager to offer the band an open bar BEFORE the shows!
As you grew from a child into a man you still displayed the same adventurous, caring and loving nature and drew people to you.
Your close circle of friends were SO important to you and a call from any one of them-girl or boy-would see you dropping everything to be there when they needed you. You would be so proud of them now Ross, because they dropped everything and came to us and haven’t left our sides since we got that awful news.
You dealt with your seizures with courage and fortitude and lived life to the full, not allowing anything to stop you.
Ross, please forgive me for being weak, but there will be no singing here today. Singing, for both you and I has always been a joyful thing. Today is not joyful. Not for me. I can’t sing today.
But there WILL be singing again-I know that there are several guitars in the boots of cars here today, ready to go down to your wake and there will be music and laughter-just as you would want there to be-as we remember you and celebrate the love and laughter that you filled our lives with.
You were a big man with a big grin my darling, who gave the best hugs and who had a huge, loving heart. And I loved you oh, so very, very much. I always will.
From a very young age, the 3 of us found saying ‘I love you’ to each other very natural and very easy and I told you every time we spoke or messaged each other that I loved you and without missing a beat you would tell me that you also loved me.
They were the last words we said to each other and for that, I shall always be truly grateful.
The pain of losing you so soon is unbearable and I cannot find the words to express just how much I am going to miss you and yearn for you. But I am so very, very grateful that I had you for those 27 years and that we were so very happy and so very close. My loss really IS Heaven’s gain.
I love you, my darling boy.
Until we meet again, sleep well,
With my eternal love,
22 August at 09:22 · For those who were asking me to post the list of songs we used yesterday as they wanted to listen to them again, here is the list-and the explanations as to why each song was special to Ross x
22 August at 14:49 · About to go with my sister and brother-in-law and place Ross’s wreaths on my Dad’s and Uncles headstones
22 August at 18:03 · Got a bit emotional this afternoon when we placed the flowers on the graves of my beautiful Dad and my wonderful uncles…but we st on the bench besides him in the sunshine and talked about him and Ross and there was laughter s well as tears…even when we spoke about yesterday
22 August at 18:27 · I can’t write about yesterday yet….but I will…..
23 August at 18:10 · The flowers done for us by Jan at Heavenly Wishes were absolutely stunning-including the heart-wreath, the thistle-heart wreath, the guitar and all the buttonholes, the roses for the table-centres, the condolence-table display and the single rose for me to place on my sons’ coffin. Thank you so very, very much xxx
23 August at 19:15 · Thank you so much to Corrin and Lisa, not only for the amazing electric-guitar/vinyls stand they made and the 150 beautiful and personal cupcakes that they made for Ross’ wake, but for also turning up at the house the day after Ross died with a huge box of groceries for Scott to help him over the next few days-including a huge and beautiful cake x
23 August at 20:50 · To all the family and friends of mine, Scott and Ross, who came to Scott when he really needed you and then stayed even after I got home;
who hugged us, cried with us, laughed with us; drank with us; shopped for us (even for girly things for me-sorry boys!!); then cried some more;
gave us lifts, brought us food, organised flowers and just sat with us and said nothing; who sent over 70 stunning floral arrangements and bouquets; who sent over 300 cards; who just held our hands….
To all of you…you are magnificent and Scott and I will never find the words to tell you how we feel about you….so once again, music is needed…….
23 August at 21:33 · To all the family and friends who flew from all over the world, travelled from all over the UK, took time off work and just made that extra effort to come and say goodbye to Ross and to be with us, thank you all from the bottom of my heart-Ross would have been SO very touched and humbled that you all went that extra mile for him…literally x
23 August at 22:51 · To all of you friends, mutual friends and friends-of-friends who turned facebook into a yellow rose-garden on Friday-thank you. As I think I said on the day, you will never know the impact that had on me-it felt like Ross really was everywhere and being thought about with loving and caring thoughts-thank you from the bottom of my heart
You, Rosie and I go back a LONG way and we’ve both had our ups and downs along the way, but your friendship is one I have always treasured.
When you said that you would officiate for us on the worst, saddest and most dreaded day of our lives, Scott and i were so relieved, because it meant that Ross would be represented by someone who had watched him grow up from a little boy into a young man and who knew him very well.
You had also worked alongside him and Scott in various concerts and charity events that we did together; our 3 ‘An Evening with Kev & Lyn’ at the Swansea Grand Theatre and others.
I have always told you you had wonderful voice that people should hear and when in ‘Swansea Women’ you played ‘Billy Post’ I was SO proud of you….and of course Ross played guitar in the pit orchestra with me as MD and on Keyboard1.
You went above and beyond, calling and texting and visiting us over these long sad few weeks.
On Friday, who were simply wonderful. You found the right balance of seriousness, faith and humour-even though I know, at times, you also found it very hard.
You spoke about BOTH of my beautiful boys from the heart and with a compassion that only comes from years of knowing them both personally.
You guided Ross’ heartbroken young friends throughout and they knew you had their backs.
You were our rock that day and when you looked at me at exactly the moment I needed you to, it pulled me through.
I love and adore you and will never, ever forget what you did for Ross and for us….and what you said was right…Swansea people ARE special-especially you.
With all my love,
Lyn x Someone Else’s Son – Kev Johns
From the time I started meeting you as you became friends with Ross (and Scott) and a part of our lives from as young as 5/6 years old, you have been a very special group of friends.
Over the years, I have watched you develop into warm, loving, talented, generous, caring, industrious, ambitious, adventurous, fearless, individual and pride-generating young adults….and Ross adored each and every one of you.
You WERE his life.
What you did reflected on him and vice-versa.
As you grew up and tended to congregate in my house, it never ceased to amaze me JUST how much food you lot could get through-a herd of giant locusts couldn’t have done a better job of emptying my fridge, freezer and cupboards!
I loved seeing you all in the garden and as you got older, I loved to hear you playing your guitars and singing away….just a happy bunch of kids.
I loved watching you all get dirty playing rugby or football-I didn’t love all the trips to A&E though!
I loved that you all came to our Christmas Eve parties and totally joined in, singing around the piano on the tops of your voices-it always made Christmas so special in our house-I especially loved Ross in his Santa suit!!
I loved that as young adults, you much preferred chilling in Singleton, bonfires on the beach, live music gigs, or just congregating in each others houses, to Wind St and that culture.
I loved that you would sing and dance and go to festivals and get muddy and dirty and not care a jot….I didn’t love Ross trashing my car once though by driving over a tree-stump!!
I love the adults you’ve become and I love how you all dropped everything and came to be with us over this last gut-wrenching few weeks.
Your sorrow was and is as real as ours-we know how much you loved Ross.
On Friday, you were astonishing. You all looked so, so sad it almost broke what was left of my heart. To walk up behind the hearse as you did, shoulder-to-shoulder; to have to carry Ross in on his final journey must have been heart-breaking for you: to encourage me out of the car and hold me when I couldn’t remember how to breathe or walk; to escort me down the aisle on the longest walk of my life; to speak for him; to cry for him….and later….to laugh about him and to once again sing for him and play your guitars-and oh, how incredible that guitar-playing was-it was perfect.
I don’t know what else I can say, but thank you. Thank you for being such a huge and happy part of Ross’ life and for making him so very, very happy. He would have been bursting with pride for you on Friday.
He was coming home to be with you as you all enter the next stage of your adult life and was so looking forward to it.
Kev said on Friday that it was the people that make Swansea special…and it’s future as a warm, welcoming city is assured with people like you living here.
I love you all and pray that you will continue to be a part of my life, because when I see you, I see my darling Ross.
With all my love,
25 August at 20:55 · I was trying to remember all this to tell someone on friday evening but brain wasn’t working….so here’s the info on where Ross’ name ‘Malachey’ came from:
The Book of Malachi (origin of ‘Malachey’) is the last book of the Old Testament.
It is also a gemstone-Malachite, which the Egyptians used to grind up to make green eyeshadow. They also use the stone in amulets, believing it would protect them x Malachite gemstone meaning
26 August at 10:23 · Mam is coming out of hospital today=good
Jayne and Peter left to return to Australia=bad
26 August at 13:05 · Been out…walked around Sketty…came back.
The yellow roses on my nails still look good despite doing all the dishes without gloves….
27 August at 10:11 · What is it with THIS year????
Before Ross passed away, I’d already heard of some dreadfully sad, untimely deaths-more than seemed ‘normal’-so much so, a few people had commented to me that they’d never known a year like it for bad news…..and since Ross, there have been many more…
Just today a dear friend has lost her brother.
It’s numbing…bad news after bad news.
Is there something written somewhere about 2015??
Was it destined to be a really sad year?
27 August at 12:23 · I’m quoting my friend Buzz here:
“The best thing about Facebook is that at special times in our lives both good and bad, you can stay in touch with friends from all over the world, without harming a single tree!!” Agreed x
27 August at 13:27 · Please forgive me if you were at Ross’ funeral and I haven’t thanked you for coming-it was all a bit too much and there were so very many there-I know I certainly didn’t see everyone-it was all a bit of a blur, to be honest. But from Scott and I, ‘thank you’ for taking the time to come and say goodbye to Ross x
28 August at 19:16 · This time last week, we were at the wake of my beautiful boy Malachey Ross. It feels like 10 years ago to me….I can’t believe just a week has passed. Time has changed for me…or at least, my concept of time has changed.
The night before Ross’ funeral, I went to the Chapel of Rest with Julie, to sit with Ross for a while. Richard was there and was so kind.
We sat and we looked at all the beautiful flowers and I stared at the Welsh Flag draped over my boys’ coffin and we spoke about him and remembered some funny things-so we laughed.
Then I asked Richard to move the drape a little so I could see Ross’ brass name-plate….I don’t know why…maybe to prove it was him??
With the flag on it, somehow it seemed to disguise the fact that it was a coffin…but with the flag removed, it suddenly hit me like a sledgehammer that this, in fact, WAS my son’s coffin.
I was suddenly and unexpectedly overcome with the most intense feeling of wanting to rip open the lid and just cwtch him…..give him a hug and tell him that everything was going to be alright….that I’d look after Scott for him and that Grandad would be there to meet him. It was one of the most intense moments of my life and it took every ounce of restraint not to do what I had this intense urge to do.
Then we covered the coffin again and we left-and I felt….oh I don’t know……peaceful?
I didn’t get much sleep that night.
In the morning, every single thing I did seemed surreal-as if someone else was doing it. Because every single thing I did was in readiness for Ross’ funeral and I couldn’t get my head round that.
As family and close friends arrived at the house, it got very emotional.
When I saw Scott in his kilt-he looked so handsome I thought I would burst-he was my Braveheart.
The 2 funeral cars took us to the Chapel of Rest and seeing all of Ross’ closest friends there was heartbreaking-they all looked so very young again.
It was very sad as Kevin spoke and music we’d chosen played and there were many tears. I don’t remember much of the detail, but I do remember Kev saying that he’d never seen a Chapel of Rest so full and I felt proud. Proud of Ross.
We then travelled to the Crematorium and I had such a shock to see hundreds of people there as we approached.
When Richard, Kev and Scott got out and walked up the drive in front of Ross….it was SO respectful and so, so dreadfully sad.
And then it happened.
I couldn’t breathe. I suddenly forgot how. I was totally overwhelmed by grief all of a sudden and just sat there sobbing and struggling to get my breath. My sister Jayne was incredible and she very gently and very slowly got my breathing back to normal and eventually I was able to get out of the car-but I don’t remember doing that. I think it was possibly hearing the first strains of ‘Stairway to Heaven’ which made me breathless….I do remember holding on to Robyn for all I was worth, but I don’t remember walking up the steps or down the aisle.
I do remember glimpsing Scott carrying his brother and thinking that he shouldn’t be doing that….none of them should-Peter, my brother-in-law, Matt-Scott’s best friend and Ross’s closest friends-Jon, Rhodri and Mike…..I felt so very sad that they had to do this dreadful thing.
I remember crying and laughing in equal measure throughout the wonderful service led so beautifully by Kev…and I remember placing the single long-stemmed yellow rose by the head of the coffin holding my boy.
I remember listening to Scott as he spoke so eloquently and with such feeling about his brother and once again being overwhelmed with pride for the man he has become.
I remember just staring at his vintage ’72 Gibson-which had never looked so clean, standing there next to his coffin and feeling just so sad that he would never play it again.
I also remember feeling totally, gut-wrenchingly heart-broken as well.
I remember the receiving line-but not everyone I had a hug/kiss off.
Then we left and went to his wake-and I had to once again fight the urge to run back in and get him out of that coffin and shout at him for playing such an awful joke on us….but it wasn’t a joke, it was real.
What a send-off he had. It was perfect.
This week, Scott and I have both said that we haven’t had a single moment of ‘we should have said this-or we should have said that…or we should have played THIS music or THAT music’….and so on and so on…we both felt that we got it right-for Ross….it was exactly as he would have wanted it to be.
The venue and food were perfect, the beer flowed and when the boys then got their guitars out and started singing…well it was just wonderful.
It was so lovely to see family and friends we hadn’t seen for a while-and all there because of Ross-who would have been first at the bar, first in line at the buffet and first to get his guitar out…and yes….probably first to get absolutely steaming drunk as well.
He was no angel….but he was MY angel….and now he’s up there-an angel in training-probably causing mayhem…oh I hope so.
So, thank you to all of you who played a part in saying the perfect goodbye to my imperfect, but beautiful, Ross.
29 August at 16:10 · A piece of advice….get your photographs printed out!!!
The fact that I was able to put my hands on so many lovely photographs of Ross and choose suitable ones for various things was worth the world.
It also made me realise that for the last few years, I’ve hardly printed any actual photographs out-they’re all stored on hard-drives….
So little by little, over the next few months, I’m going to get them all printed-there are some amazing deals online.
To physically HOLD his photograph in my hand is very comforting…and to look back at the thousands I have here charting his growth and his life….oh I am SO glad I took them x
29 August at 18:34 · The cards…….I intend to reply to those I can, just give me time
29 August at 18:37 · These beautiful pictures of BOTH my lovely boys in full Mackay-Tartan kilt-outfits, were taken in 2003 at the Wedding Vows Renewal Ceremony of their Auntie Ann & Uncle Douglas-both of whom came down from Scotland on the sleeper train for the funeral. They’d had the photographs enlarged and one of them framed for me….and I shall treasure them always x
30 August at 00:14 · My boys x
30 August at 12:33 · BlackBerry Smartphones App · I was lucky enough to be given some Pandora vouchers by 2 friends not on facebook, so I slipped into town yesterday and got 3 in Memory of Ross: a heart with the January birthstone; a barrel of stars and a Celtic-weave ball…I think he’d approve x
30 August at 18:44 · Just got home…Mam ok-ish……to say I am mentally and physically exhausted would be the grossest of understatements
31 August at 11:10 · 42 years ago today I became a professional entertainer….blink of an eye…..
31 August at 19:01 · My father would go the night before and bury ‘treasures’ in the woods behind his and Mam’s house (usually gold-wrapped chocolate coins and old rubbish he got from car-boot sales). He’d make an ‘old treasure map’.The following day he’d pretend to find it and off he, Scott, Ross and the dog would go to find the treasure, ‘Indiana’ stomping off as proud as punch
2 September at 12:31 · BlackBerry Smartphones App · A day of new normality perhaps, after a simply dreadful day yesterday
Had the black nails re-painted a lighter colour and the yellow roses removed-which felt disloyal to Ross, weirdly, but had to be done.
Now having coffee with Mabe xxx
2 September at 18:43 ·Well, that’s a milestone moment-just taught my first lesson since…well, you know. And it was great…had an adult pro- student practically bounce out of the house, all fired up lol!! Spent this lesson mentoring and planning so not much singing but it was great!! Did me the world of good as well-and I didn’t cry once xxx
5 September at 12:51 · Hi can i please ask any parents bringing their children for lessons this week to please NOT talk to me about what’s happened, as a parent did that on Thursday which set me off, leading to me having to cancel lessons…and up until then, I was managing ok. Thank you x
5 September at 13:35 · THE TRUTH HURTS.
It’s nearly 7 weeks now since we lost Ross…but it feels like years to me.
I feel like I’m on the edge of a very deep, very black hole and it wouldn’t take much to push me over.
It hasn’t helped realising how let down I’ve been by some people I really thought were friends.
I’ve heard it said before by others, that it takes a tragedy like this to make you realise exactly who your friends are-and more importantly, who aren’t…but I never thought that it would apply to me.
Having recently taken down the hundreds of sympathy cards we’ve been sent from all over the world and carefully made a note of who each one was from; then gone into my email inbox, my facebook inbox and ‘other’ inbox and started to get round to thank everyone I hadn’t responded to yet for their beautiful, heart-felt messages; then turn to my mobile and do the same with all those text messages and whatsapp messages, has made me realise what wonderful family & friends we have and how lucky we are.
It has, however, also shown me some rather odd and quite disturbing things.
The Victorian term ‘coffin-follower’ still applies, as I have had loads and loads of friend requests and emails from total strangers with whom I have no mutual friends, who obviously just read about it in the paper and wanted to be part of this tragedy-weirdos-you know the sort-the ones who turn up at a wake just for the free food and to cadge free drinks.
I also have huge gaping omissions….which tbh has been a shock and intense disappointment, to discover that some people-whilst pretending to be a friend, most certainly aren’t.
Seven weeks…and no text, no personal message, no email, no card, no flowers, no visit…from people I REALLY thought were not just friends, but CLOSE friends.
And don’t give me the old ‘I didn’t know what to say’ because NOBODY knew what to say. Nobody.
But it still didn’t stop them coming, those ‘real’ friends….some of whom were actually not very close to me-until now…they came….they came undaunted and unflinching, to pay their condolences, or show they were thinking about us by sending a card, email or text, or a message on here…or just to sit and cry with me and make endless cups of tea.
So do you really think, in view of all this that I want you as a ‘friend’?
Of course not.
However, I am also very aware of the old adage “keep your friends close but your enemies closer”…so over the next few days as I quietly carry on deleting and unfollowing…I shan’t be deleting everyone that I should…..because one day…Karma WILL get you, so I don’t have to.
But now I know.
I know who you really are.
Conversely, other friends, REAL friends-both old and new, have stepped up and gone above and beyond the human condition, showing kindness, compassion and loyalty that I have found truly humbling, breath-taking and sometimes overwhelming.
I am so very honoured that these wonderful people are now what I consider to be my ‘best’ friend and i know how lucky i am to have them.
You really are special people and I love you all dearly x
5 September at 13:50 ·Me, being photo-bombed by Ross-before the term was invented-on my 50th birthday x
5 September at 13:52 · My beautiful, beautiful boys x
6 September at 22:17 · Well thanks to the generosity of Alan & Tara (who have their wedding anniversary today!!! Happy Anniversary!! ♥), I have just got back from my first social outing for 7 weeks…and we had SUCH a lovely time with lovely people…and again, new friendships were formed. LOTS of cocktails, lots of laughter and chat…and for the first time in 7 weeks, a whole day when I haven’t cried-thank you so much all of you-it was just perfect. Alan and Tara, we can’t thank you enough xxx
7 September at 14:27 · So over the last 7 weeks, I’ve tried specialist teas, herbal remedies, Horlicks, Hot Milk, Hot Chocolate, JD & Coke, relaxation techniques, relaxation cd’s, sleep-music, sleeping tablets, Bach remedies, special baths…and NOTHING got me to sleep……until last night, when I had my first proper sleep for about 7 hours….all thanks to COCKTAILS!!! Right there-that’s your answer to insomnia-cocktails!!
7 September at 19:55 · I did it!! THREE vocal lessons back-to-back and I didn’t cry or melt-down once!! Thank you SO much to my young students and their parents for NOT talking about ‘it’ But we did it! Am SO chuffed…just hope it continues x
7 September at 22:30 · Scott on drums, Ross on guitar, Nick on bass-taken at the Grand Theatre during ‘An Evening with Kev & Lyn’ (which we did 3 times as it sold out each time) I was SO proud of the boys. I AM proud of the boys. Happy times x
8 September at 04:11 · 0400…so the hot chocolate didn’t work. Guess this is the price I pay for sleeping last night-no sleep tonight. Hey ho…one step forward, two steps back….sigh
8 September at 06:37 · …and after a one-night break…the sleepless, endless, sad-thoughts-filled nights are back
8 September at 15:42 · BlackBerry Smartphones App · Meet Robbie the Rhino…who now joins Kevin the Komodo Dragon and Jack the Jaguar in Ross’ menagerie smile emoticon Robbie is very special because he’s made out of Malachite and was my first-ever auction attempt on eBay-for a fiver
9 September at 10:01 · the no-sleep took it’s toll…after seeing to mam yesterday, felt very strange on bus on way home…so quickly ate something but was very sick soon after…ended up in bed by 8 and aching all over as a result but there we are x
23 hrs The boys enjoying a game of football and picnic at Singleton Park
Singing at the funeral of a dear friend’s son….little did I realise that 3 years later-almost t the day, it would be my own son’s funeral. God bless them both
20 hrs · Well now, this is weird. When Ross died, it was really upsetting me that I couldn’t find my old Jim Croce book as he’d taken it back to Thailand with him to learn ‘Time in a Bottle’ and ‘Bad, Bad Leroy Brown’. I made sure I wasn’t imagining it, by going through my cupboard looking for it and asking a couple of friends to do the same to no avail-it meant a lot as it was the last song I taught him from a book. Anyway a couple of days ago, I messaged Phil in Thailand to ask if he could go and have a look for it for me. Then….tonight when Luke was here, we went in the cupboard to get a songbook out and right at the front was this book!!!! Make of that what you will……
12 September 2012 Singing ‘SONGBIRD’ for Steve, as his coffin was brought in….hardest sing I’ve ever has to do….but so honoured to have been asked and so honoured to have known such a lovely, lovely man x 3 Years Ago Today
3 hrs ·
Today is a bad day. Yesterday was pretty bad as well. Heart palpitations aren’t helping…making me feel on edge/scared…but apparently a fairly ‘normal’ response to intense grief. Whatever. Today is a bad day.