Memorial bench dedicated to compassionate nurse

Dudley and Walsall Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust has unveiled a bench at Bushey Fields Hospital, Dudley, in memory of Henry Christian Knight-Willis, who passed away suddenly in October 2017.

The bench was unveiled as part of a memorial service, given by Chaplain, Rev. Stephen Bentley, which was hosted in the chapel at Russells Hall Hospital.

During the service, family and friends of Henry heard a number of tributes, including from the Trust’s Director of Finance, Rob Pickup.

Rob said: “Thank you all for being here today for the bench blessing ceremony for our dear colleague Henry. The amount of people who have come today is a testimony to the people’s lives he touched.”

Henry came to work for the Trust as a qualified staff nurse on Clent Ward, Bushey Fields Hospital in 2006. He was a much loved and respected colleague, who was described as ‘the moon that shone through the clouds.’

Anne-Marie Shaw, a colleague of Henry’s also spoke during the service. She said: “Henry was a gentle giant with a smile to match his stature. He was an intelligent and caring man, respected by his colleagues and patients alike.

“He had a love of art which he shared with all on the ward and he always supported his colleagues when times got tough.

Henry’s daughter, Shari Lawrence-Willis also delivered a beautiful tribute to her dad. She thanked the Trust and the staff and said it was wonderful to see how just how truly cherished Henry was by the people he spent so much time with.

She then read a poem she had written – which moved many of the congregation to tears.

Henry’s bench sits on the grass between Clent Ward and Wrekin Ward and looks out over the town that Henry was so fond of and made such great memories working in.

Shari’s poem: A tribute to dad – one of a kind

Your life was a blessing to many, what a positive impact you’ve had,
As a bother, a son, an uncle. A friend, a colleague…our dad.

Two years on, yet it hasn’t quite hit me…few words can describe how I feel.
Though there’s joy when I think of our memories, your a

bsence just seems so unreal.

Still I smile at the thought of your voice, your passion, your kind caring heart.
Your humour, your style, your intellect, not to mention your marvellous art.

As a mental health nurse, you served others – a noble, admirable choice.
You cared about building relationships and giving the voiceless a voice.

To acknowledge your great contribution, it’s an honour to gather today.
So admired by numerous people, with such wonderful words to say.

We will never forget your legacy, this will remain in our hearts and our minds.
May your memory live on forever, Henry Knight-Willis, you were truly one of a kind.