You Can Be An Angel

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

November 2008

This will probably be the last entry into this record to the amazing courage of Becca. She fought against all odds –determined to survive metastatic melanoma. Sadly she died in May 2007 but her vast energy and joy for life continues.

In so many ways Becca’s uniqueness will continue to bring a smile to many who pass by. A beautiful garden is now reaching completion at Lewannick Primary School; a sturdy natural picnic table is firmly established in Stara Woods; Kev’s series of ‘Becca Paintings’ is awaiting a final coat of varnish, and we have sold Becca’s house - Kev now lives in a caravan in the middle of a forest. And that is just how Becca would have wished it to be!

The "melanoma awareness" DVD has been the focus of so much good work. A copy is now in every school and college in the South West of England – and it has had a wide distribution through many hospitals.

We now have strong links with the Myfanwy Townsend Melanoma Research Fund – and we are exploring the possibility of a mobile educational unit to work throughout Cornwall.

We will continue to publish news of this project on

Our thanks and our love to you all

Bet and Peter Kaye


After Becca’s death we received hundreds of cards and letters – so many reflections and memories. Here is one poem, written by our dear friend Fran.


The theatre is empty now.
By day, the sunlight slants
On battered boards.
By night, the moonlight
Milks the mute applause
Of silent rows.
Whatever play was here
Has now moved on.
The curtains closed,
And audiences, stirred,
Have now to homes all gone.

But through these doors,
In rivers of bright voices,
Rushing on through valleyed woods
And tumbling down towards the sea,
The story of the world still courses,
Told – as it must always be –
From the moment it is lived
Until the oceans set it free

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Happy Easter Angels!

The DVD mentioned in the post before last is now nearing completion. The children from Becca's class at Lewannick Primary School have made the most amazing film. This, together with a highly original 'animated' version for secondary schools (eat your heart out Nick Park!) should be ready by the end of the month.

Both versions will be distributed to all Cornish schools by the end of April. We are also hoping to encourage other counties to make use of the material. We would obviously like as many young people as possible to see the film - and before the heat of the summer. We hope to send all 'Becca's Angels' a copy during May.

By that time we are also hoping to circulate some catalogues of Kevin's art work. It is slowly coming together - but getting any artist to release work is never easy! He has had success with his band however, and should keep you up to date. Lovely to see that Becca's clarinet (through the track 'Players') is covering the globe.

And Tara Fraser (formerly Stack to our Launceston College readers) at has awarded the Rebecca Kaye Bursary (for studying 'Yoga for People Living with Cancer') to Bryan Fox. We wish him courage, energy and joy in the challenge which lies ahead.

The Stara Woods Picnic area (seen above, this morning) the living willow project, and Lewannick's School's 'Elvis Meets Miss Kaye' garden are all in the developmental stage - and all should come together in the Spring. Becca's energy for life - and her constant smile - are still with us.

We remember her 35th Birthday - a year ago (on 24th March) when you sent all those cards! That made her smile!

Thanks to you all!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Merry Xmas Angels

The picture above is one of Kev's 'angel series' simply titled 'Becca's Angels IV'. With it goes our best wishes to all 'angels' and friends. We would hope for a healthy 2008 for all our readers!

Sam and her friend Clare ran through the foulest of weather to complete the Great South Run. Their final total should be £4,000 which they raised on behalf of CANCERactive. The Angel Fund did make a donation - but several people gave additional support. Thank you to you all. Funds were also raised for The Macmillan Service - and congratulations to friend Imogen Hills who actually beat Sam by about 30 seconds. Ooops!

700 Cornish Daffodils have been planted in Bec's name in Stara Woods. We await Spring for more progress on this project.

We are now about to put out the Primary School version of 'Melanoma Awareness' to The Health Authority for their reaction. It has been an emotional challenge for us all - but particularly for Donna who has been working so closely with Becca's class. The children's memories are tear-jerking. We had no idea that Becca based so much of her teaching on the use of a Whoopee Cushion!!

Finally, on behalf of all of 'the angels' we have bought Becca a Christmas present. Through Action Aid (a charity which Becca supported) we have provided classroom equipment in Ethiopia - and for the education of several children in India.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Music And Lyrics

Filming at Lewannick Primary School is now completed. The children from Becca's class have delivered a poignant script and have written their own song. Kev has arranged the accompaniment and can be seen here playing on Becca's famous red guitar.

Donna and Krys now begin the task of editing - and we wish them well!

Great news for Kev's band The Harry Munk Project. Following a charity gig in Torquay for OXJAM they have bookings now from Ilfracombe to Bristol. Throughout the two years that Kev cared for Becca she always insisted that his weekly music sessions with the band took place. She will be well pleased!

Stara Woods Revisited

At last! We have cleared Becca's special place in Stara Woods. The trees are down and the area clearly identified. You can see that Bet has been allowed away from the knitting for a brief spell!

Nature will now take its course until the Spring - when we will add the picnic bench and living willow sculptures, plant to encourage more butterflies - and put into place our trail of smiles.

Great South Run This Weekend!

And finally we wish our three runners a safe 'journey' in next Sunday's Great South Run. Sam and her friend Claire are running in Bec's memory on behalf of CANCERactive - and friend Imogen, again with Bec on her back, will be running for The Macmillan Service. Thank you to all who have sponsored them! I'm not sure Becca totally approves of 'running marathons' so expect a few jovial tricks along the way!

Anyone who still hasn't sponsored them and would like to, please see this for further information.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Memories & Memorials part one

From Becca's dad, Peter;

"Tara Fraser (Stack) - ex Launceston College and Middlesex Uni - has set up a bursary in Becca's memory, which is a lovely idea."

Indeed it is. Here's more information:

Wheel of Yoga, Teaching Yoga for Cancer Module

A new bursary set up in memory of Rebecca Kaye aims to increase the numbers of yoga teachers working with people with cancer by offering financial assistance for their training.

The bursary is available to qualified Yoga teachers from any tradition to study this groundbreaking BWY Module with Julie Friedeberger, one of the UK’s foremost teachers in the field.

All applications considered. In the first instance please contact Julie herself at juliefried(at)clara(dot)co(dot)uk for more information."

Tara's own site can be found here

Memories & Memorials part two

It seems that other memorials for Bob are also nicely underway - as per the earlier posts below - and here's the rest of the email Peter;

"Donna's filming going well (see below) - plans for a garden in school with giant pots in the shape of blue suede shoes - Sam still in training (for her run, and the information on how to sponsor her is still below) - and the first paintings (from Kevin) are nearing completion - but thankfully it is still too rainy for me to get the strimmer and the chain saw into the woods!"

And Peter is hopeful that Becca's story and how her alternative therapy helped will soon be in the Daily Mail.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Life Goes On

It seems important, to us as a family, that we need to redirect the vast energy and joy for life which was such an integral part of Becca’s being. And so we are aiming to carry forward this energy force in a variety of ways. Our grief will always be there, but as Becca would always remind us, it is through laughter and joy that we can make the world a less threatening place.

Kev is getting into his studio - more news on the paintings (and other projects) later!

Our love to all Becca’s Angels – and to everyone working on the projects! And if you can sponsor Sam (Becca's sister) on her Great South Run, there are details below.

The Melanoma Awareness Project

"Nostalgia" was the first of many! This show toured in 1994 – in Becca’s Morris Minor!

Donna Kilpin (formerly Donna Goddard – BAPA Midddlesex University) worked with Becca for ten years as ‘Small Scale Theatre’ – touring hilarious comedy shows and encouraging community involvement throughout Cornwall and Devon. Donna is now directing the creation of two very special films (in inter-active DVD format) which aim to raise the public awareness of melanoma and for the need to take swift action when once it strikes.

Lewannick Primary School (where Becca was working before brain tumours made teaching impossible) is to feature in the first film. It has a good ‘sun care’ policy and this will be central to the story. The second film, relying heavily on footage from Becca’s own performances, will be aimed at older children and adults.

Donna is working closely with Dr Tom Lucke, dermatologist at The Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro, and their aim is clear. The rate of melanoma is increasing rapidly – especially in the South West. When once it takes hold there is no cure. People must take care. And must be encouraged to spot early signs.

The Health Authority hope to distribute the films widely throughout Cornwall. The technical work is being managed by Multi- Media Arts Documentation (M-MAD). Krystyna Zdan-Michajlowicz who founded the company seven years ago was a friend of Becca’s – and had been working with Becca and Donna to document the work of Small Scale – and indeed M-MAD evolved from Small Scale’s community work.

Krystyna feels proud to be supporting this venture – and we are so pleased to have her company working along side.

You can find details of M-MAD here

Stara Woods

These are a particularly ‘natural’ collection of woodlands – in a very peaceful location between Launceston and Liskeard (Grid Reference SX289737). Progress on this project is following a leisurely pace and the summer weather has not helped. An area to the west of the River Lyner has been identified. It lies in the shelter of a rocky outcrop. Woodsman Anthony Waters is to use timber from the woods to build a picnic area. It will be approached via a pathway along the side of which we are to plant butterfly encouraging species. A ‘Trail of Smiles’ will lead through the woods.

Sam's Run

Sam Williams (Becca’s sister Sammy (Right)) and her friend Claire Mowbray (Left) are both now well into their training schedule for The Great South Run in Portsmouth on October 28th.

They are raising money for ‘CANCERactive’, a charity which aims to publish, through its magazine ICON, all research, from all sources, connected with the treatment of cancer. CANCERactive will strive to remain independent of the pharmaceutical industry.

If you would like to sponsor Sam and make a donation, then please go to the CANCERactive website then scroll down to the bottom of the page and enter the name of the person and the amount. Or ring their office on 01280 821211.

Monday, July 09, 2007

A Further Update

Thank you so much for all the cards, letters, photos and anecdotes. It is obviously a great comfort to us all to have your loving support. Friends Roger and Michele have just returned from Tibet where, at 3500m, flags are now flying on behalf of Becca and all her angels. Long may they flutter!

We gave Becca a 'theatrical' send off on 5th June - and it was a beautiful day.We worked hard to avoid sentiment as Becca had instructed. Elvis featured, together with Neil Diamond and 'The Sound of Music' - with a bit of jiving and lots of sunflowers and bright colours. It was not easy, but we performed with a degree of flair worthy of a true BAPA!

And now we are focusing on the various projects which will carry forward Becca's great energy and her enthusiasm for life.

Kev has his canvas in place - and is beginning his series of 'Becca's Angels'. More news later! Kev is also part of a band. Becca's clarinet playing featured on a track on their last album. The studio has recordings of her improvisations - and so they are to incorporate her into their future work:

Plans are being made for a special area of peace to be created in Stara Woods. When once the rain stops we hope to hold small working parties - and plant unusual ferns, creating patterns over the rock face which overlooks the river. We are also hoping to create a 'trail of smiles' - carved in wood - either in the ground like small totems or hanging in trees. If you know of anyone who would like to add carvings then please let us know. Watch out for dates of any working parties!

Our 'educational project' is beginning to look very exciting. The Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro has just established a unit to specialise in melanoma. Cornwall is being recognised as a high incidence area for skin cancer and a new medical team has been appointed. We have already begun a series of meetings with them.

Donna (ex Middlesex University) and Becca's theatre partner, is leading the creation of two DVDs - one aimed at primary children, and the second for teenagers and adults. We aim to use Becca's story to try to make people more aware of the danger which lies in the sun. Again, if you have any information - or know of any useful material out there - then please let us know.

Sam (and a couple of friends from Bristol) have entered The Great South Run in October and are raising money for CANCERactive. If you do know of others who are struggling against cancer - then we do suggest that you use

Already several of you have offered to sponsor Sam - so we'll give out more details later. We have at least one Angel running in next year's London Marathon on behalf of Macmillan Nurses - great!

Bet promised Becca that she would finish off all the knitting projects! That should keep her occupied for a year or two! And we know that there are other ways in which Becca's energy is being put to positive use. Bless you all! Thank you once again!
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