By Alastair Campbell (author and former head of communications to Tony Blair).
I want to thank the hundreds of people who sent messages, direct and on social media, after I published a tribute to my brother in the Sunday Times News Review. And though I often slag off the Murdoch media machine, I want to thank the Sunday Times for giving me so much space, and for treating the subject so seriously and so sensitively.
Of course, I could have just posted the piece on here and I am sure it would have attracted a fair bit of attention. But the kind of space the Sunday Times offered me was too good to miss, speaking with my Time To Change Ambassador hat on. And they agreed that provided I could give them a day’s exclusivity, then it could go anywhere.
So this is an open invitation to anyone who wants it to use it as they wish. If you want pictures of him, email me via my website and I will try to help. The more people read about mental illness, and talk about mental illness, the better will be our campaign for more funding, improved research and services. The more people realize that mental illness is not incompatible with doing good jobs and having a life full of potential and opportunity, the better we will all be too.
Donald was not ‘a schizophrenic’. He was a man who had schizophrenia. Big difference. He refused to let his life be defined by his illness. And he was a man who lived an amazing life despite it. I will be doing the eulogy for Donald at his funeral, for which we don’t yet have a date, and I will publish it here after the event.