Eddie and Irene Toal
Eddie Toal lost his wife Irene to breast cancer in 2011 after a gruelling three year battle she waged with courage, determination and, incredibly, lots of laughter. ”Irene was not only the love of my life,” he says, “She was the bravest person I’ve ever met and was just 48 years old when she passed away.”
During treatment, Irene had nothing but praise for the doctors, nurses and staff at the Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre. It was her dying wish to help other patients attending the hospital.
As a semi-professional jazz singer, Eddie decided to raise money for Beatson Cancer Charity by making a memorial CD.
“Irene had always wanted me to make a CD but I never got round to it”, he recalls.
Now, after enlisting the help of some award winning British jazzmen, he’s put together an album entitled ‘Always In My Heart’.
“It’s all songs about love,” he explains. “The wistful yearning for it, the joy of finding it, the day-to-day year-by-year enjoyment of it, and the agony of losing it.”
All proceeds and royalties from the CD are going to the Beatson Cancer Charity, earmarked for patient care to help provide comfort and support to patients and their families attending the Beatson.
Unusually, Eddie gives away the CD free at gigs, asking people to make an on-line donation to ‘the Irene Toal Tribute Fund’.
“People are inherently generous to charities,” Eddie added. “I’m hoping the CD will earn more this way. All I want is the pleasure of seeing charity donations racking up under a banner raised in Irene’s name.
“My memorial is not exactly the Taj Mahal but it’s the best I can do to remember her. And it’s for a great cause.”
Eddie’s CD ‘Always In My Heart’ can be obtained by contacting the Beatson Cancer Charity on 0141 212 0505 and ask for Supporter Care. A download version can be purchased from iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and other platforms.
Irene’s tribute fund – now featured on our website – has already raised more than £5,000. We’d like to say a huge thanks to Eddie for all of his support.