One man (and his dog) plans an everlasting tribute to his late wife in a charity cycle ride from the island of Hvar in Croatia to Hampshire in the UK.
Prompted by the loss of his inspirational wife Emma, Hampshire-based Dave Goodey is set to embark on a 1500-mile charity cycle ride, leaving a path of daisy seeds – his own everlasting tribute to Emma – in his trail.
On 4th September 2015, Dave leaves the island of Hvar, Croatia, to undertake a journey back to Emma’s shop, Unique Chique, in Alton, Hampshire. The cycle ride, completed on a tandem with his and Emma’s beloved dog Lotte as a constant companion, will symbolise the journey he has been on since the death of Emma last year after a long battle with cancer. Dave says, ‘I wanted to do something positive to come out of losing Emma, but also something that represented the feelings of loss, loneliness and struggles after bereavement.’
Croatia signifies somewhere he and Emma spent many happy holidays together, and his homeward route will take him through Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, over the Alps, and into France. Lasting around 30 to 40 days, and averaging around 50 miles of cycling each day, his final destination is Alton, Hampshire. This will link two of Emma’s favourite places on earth with an everlasting trail, as Dave will be asking local families and children to help scatter daisy seeds at every 50-‐mile stop. Not only will this create a living tribute to Emma, but also leave behind a symbol of hope and unity for all the children that the charities will go on to help.
Daisies were Emma and Dave’s personal symbol of their love, childhood memories and the coincidences that bound them together. Daisies would also have been the theme of their wedding in Hampshire, where they planned to ride to their reception on a ‘bicycle made for two’, as in the song ‘Daisy, Daisy’. Sadly, due to Emma’s failing health, their original church wedding couldn’t take place, but Dave says, ‘by embarking on this journey, I feel like I am completing her wish.’
Along with Lotte, the trusty cocker spaniel Emma loved so much, Dave will be joined by friends and family along the route. He explains, ‘There will be some days, particularly in the middle, where I will be pedaling mainly on my own (unless Lotte gets the hang of it by then). It will be in all weathers, both sunshine and rain, up and downhill, through straight, winding and no doubt bumpy roads.’
‘Our journey home alone will be very symbolic and similar in ways to my journey over the last year or so dealing with the loss of Emma. I lost my wife, best friend and partner in the most unfair circumstances, but my friends, family and a very special counsellor from the charity CRUSE have carried me during the uphill struggles and helped guide me through the almost unbearable drudgery that follows bereavement. Likewise, those who join me along the route will give a helping boost during my cycle ride.’
Dave has chosen to raise funds for children’s charities that Emma has supported in the past, and the one that he has personally received support from following Emma’s death. They are:
-‐ Naomi House & Jack’s Place
-‐ CRUSE (Bereavement counseling for Adults and Children)
You can follow Dave’s journey on his website: www.daisytrailcycle.com, and via his facebook and twitter pages. He will be sending back images along the way, as well as sharing a GPS tracker to monitor his progress.
Daisy Trail Cycle @daisy_trail
Fundraising page: http://www.virginmoneygiving.com/team/daisytrailcycle
Emma’s shop, Unique Chique is based at 53, High Street, Alton, Hampshire, and is now run by her mum Rosemary, and a loyal team who work hard to keep her dreams alive. Selling a selection of preloved and painted furniture, home accessories and unique gifts – all the things that Emma loved so much -‐ it is also an official stockist of the full range of renowned Chalk Paint™ decorative paint by Annie Sloan. Annie was a highly-‐ respected mentor to Emma, and continues to support Unique Chique. The NSPCC is Annie’s chosen charity.