I Got You Babe – When Compton made UB40 fan’s dream come true

We’re incredibly proud to be celebrating 40 years of providing care and support to families in Wolverhampton and beyond who have been affected by incurable illnesses.

Put simply, we could not have achieved this milestone without our amazing members of staff, dedicated volunteers and of course our valued supporters.

We’ve been asking for everyone involved with #TeamCompton to send in their memories, stories and ‘stand-out moments’ from over the last four decades, and we’re delighted to be able to share these with you over a series of blog posts throughout our 40th year.

We’re starting with a very special memory from when Compton made a UB40 fan’s dream come true, shared by our Head of Communications, Grace Lee.

“My stand-out moment is from 2015, when I was asked if I could help to fulfil one of our patients’ wishes.

Nicola, then aged 32, had been diagnosed with terminal cervical cancer just 5 weeks before being admitted to our Inpatient Unit. A Black Country girl through and through, she told me that she was a huge fan of fellow West Midlander Ali Campbell and his bandmates UB40. Having listened to them since she was a kid, it was her wish to meet and sing to him in person.

So, with the permission and consent of Nicola and her family, we decided to harness the power of social media. We uploaded a photo of Nicola to Compton’s Facebook page and asked for people’s support to help us reach Ali.

Before we knew it, 2.5 million people had seen the post. Thousands upon thousands of people from all around the world were sharing the post and doing their bit to help make Nicola’s wish come true.

And it worked! Just 24 hours later, Ali and bandmate Astro walked through the door and gave Nicola the biggest hug.

I will never forget the smile on her face. Pure joy and elation. They sang together, and Nicola regaled the room with a rendition of her favourite song ‘Rat in the Kitchen’. Ali even told her she had a fantastic voice. It’s safe to say there wasn’t a dry eye in the house.

“I feel like I’ve come alive again, I feel stronger” said Nicola, who was visibly glowing with joy after the visit.

Nicola died 2 months later. Her family commented that the visit had given her strength, that she had found her spark again.

Still to this day, I am overwhelmed that we could make that happen for her. Whilst social media can sometimes be a scary place, it can also be incredible. Her story united people from all around the world, with thousands upon thousands working together to do something for another human being. I think this comment from one of the Facebook users sums it up: “Glad she got her wish and us facebookers had something to do with it, should be proud evry1 who shared this. WE DID GOOD!”

Every day, Compton helps to make life a little better for our patients and their families. We do all we can to ensure people are comfortable, safe, and can truly be themselves. We see them first, their illness second. We do the best we can to fulfil wishes, whether big or small. Whilst this one is undoubtedly the biggest, the same level of care, compassion and desire to help make someone’s experience a little more comfortable goes into every interaction with patients and families.”

Have you got a memory you’d like to share with us? Whether you’re a member of staff, a volunteer, or someone who has been supported by Compton in some way, please get in touch with marketing@comptoncare.org.uk. We’d love to hear from you and share your story.

Clinical Enquiries: 01902 774570, General Enquiries: 0300 323 0250.