I was just over 5 years old when my beautiful brother Derek was born. Mam says I stayed off school for a week when he came home from hospital. I went back to school knowing that my baby brother was amazing.
I remember Derek reading even before he started school. I still remember him in stitches laughing to himself while he read a Mickey Mouse comic; once he laughed so much that he fell off his chair. Breakfast time involved him sitting at the breakfast counter eating Rice Krispies with a woolly hat on his head which Mam hoped would keep his hair from sticking up (it did not work).
Derek was so talented. I fondly recall him playing Pet Shop Boys songs on his Casio keyboard and being blown away. He was always so humble, so kind and so funny.
Usually it is the older sibling who leads by example, but Derek inspired me. I was, and still am in awe of him. He packed so much into his 50 years - others would need a hundred lifetimes to achieve half as much. I am truly heartbroken yet I know I am so lucky to have had him and will always have him as my amazing brother Derek.