April 17th 1998 my fathers battle ended, his peace began, a new life, one with no pain and suffering. Dad, i remember this day so clearly, 4am we got the call and our lives changed for ever. My little brother was only 11 and my sister 15 and myself 18. You battled with MSA (multiple system atrophy) for many years. as young children we didnt know any different, we knew our dad was sick and we had to do what we had to to make you feel comfortable and get the help you needed. Our mum, was a woman with determination, drive and complete compassion for her husband and our father, till death do us part. She nursed him day in day out and us kids helped out where we could, we learnt alot and had to grow up very quickly throughout those years, and as much as 18 years has passed, it really doesnt seem to get any easier to deal with. My father was a work a holic but had all the time in the world for anyone and everyone, he wore his heart on his sleeve. A man of pride that loved and adored his family so dearly. Although growing up with a father that was ill, was very hard on us kids, as we couldnt got out and kick the footy with him the little things. Our mum still made sure we went on holidays and he was always with us on family outings, she made sure that every where we went there was help provided by the district nursing services. we never went without, we still went to our sporting events, dancing, cricket, netball, as mum always tried to keep us kids leading a "normal" life. We would have the RDNS come in and help get my father ready for the day,and at night we had a night nurse come in later on in his illness as mum really needed the rest as well. These people all become apart of our family, This woman was an inspiration, she never gave up on him or us, she just powered through it daily. I know that on many occasions mum was so tired and running low on energy, but never did she miss a beat, she was such a strong woman. Yes she broke down more often than not but who wouldnt, she was watching the love of her life, the father of her children deteriorate before her eyes on a weekly basis. We lost many friends along the way that we thought were so supportive, but as we all know when people become sick they drift away for many reasons. We had a few very close and amazing friends that supported us through every step of the way. And the family support of my mums family was just unconditional, My dads family on the other hand were very distant the moment my father become ill except for one of his sisters. My father was 1 of 7. As i look back on my life growing up with our father having MSA , today i think i find it more difficult trying to deal with his passing, i know my life would be different if he was still here but i am very happy with what i have and what ive been able to achieve without him being here. Miss you dad, and i love you so much. So today i started a facebook page that your grandkids have founded and its to raise awareness for the disease that took you away from us to soon. 50% of the funds will be donated back to this foundation to find a cure for your horrible disease.