The Gerigk Family

My husband Peter and I were living in Northmead, Peter was a General Manager of a textile laundry business with over 85 employees at North Rocks and busy as a family man living a full life with his myself and our three young daughters Sophie, Carla and Megan. Then came the crushing news in July 2008 to shatter their lives. Pete was diagnosed with cancer!

Massive gastrointestinal surgery followed a month later. Initially recovery took until October that same year. By February the following year the cancer had spread to his liver and by April Peter was barely recognisable. Unable to work and fighting for his life Peter bravely pushed on, never giving up.

After numerous rounds of chemotherapy, Pete slowly made gains almost returning to his old self by October in 2009. Then in January 2010 it was clear that he hadn’t escaped this terrible disease and he quickly deteriorated. Peter passed away on 23rd April 2010, at just 48.

The tragedy didn’t end with his suffering. Times were very difficult for us both emotionally and financially. The loss of a loved one, the stress of serious illness, the sadness and memories plus running the family and working as much as I could the whole time was and is so hard. We had no life insurances and between my earnings and some Centrelink payments and the assistance of family and friends we survived that period. Unfortunately things are not much different now.

You never dream this will happen to you or your family. These things change your life forever. My girls are growing up without their wonderful father and it’s so sad, I can’t change the way we feel and the loss is very large in our lives.

The girls were only 8yrs, 6yrs and 4 yrs old in 2010 – I know he is watching over us and is as proud as I am of their bravery and achievements. I wish things could be different.

Tricia Gerigk

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