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Labour MSP Monica Lennon writes heartbreaking letter to her dad who died from alcohol misuse

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A Labour MSP has written a heartfelt letter to her “brilliant” dad who died from alcohol misuse a year before she was elected to Holyrood.Monica Lennon wrote of attending Alcoholics Anonymous with her father Gerard and paid tribute to him as a man who helped her stand up for people.Lennon’s tribute is part of a new campaign, See Beyond – See the Lives, featuring letters by those left behind after a loved one dies from alcohol or drug use.Gerard Ward, who was a council health and safety expert, was 60 when he died from alcohol misuse.Lennon did not allow him to walk her down the aisle as he couldn’t promise to be sober and he passed away in May 2015.In her letter, she wrote of always running to her dad and recalled the times they shared:“We went to Alcoholics Anonymous together.

It was an open meeting in the Southside of Glasgow as you wanted to avoid local groups. Going to AA meetings with your dad is not how most teenage girls spend their evenings, but it fascinated me.“A whole lot of life happens when you are waiting for rock bottom.

Part of me always believed that you would fall so hard that recovery would follow. There were times it was too difficult to be around.“Too many days when it was too painful to run to you.

On those dark days when we were apart, I hope you know you were always loved.”She also wrote of the huge influence he had on her life: “You showed me how to stand up for people and just causes.

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