A Singer Made A Gut-Wrenching Video Showing People Remembering Their Loved Ones
Stephanie Rainey's emotional "Please Don't Go" sees nine people use pictures and written messages to pay tribute to those they've lost.
She has just released an extremely powerful video to accompany her new single, "Please Don't Go".
In the black-and-white video, real-life people use pictures and written messages to pay silent tribute to those who have died.
The people briefly describe how their loved one passed, and how that bereavement has made them feel. They also share their memories of that partner, parent, sibling, or child, and write what they'd say to them now if they had the chance.
Stephanie told BuzzFeed: "I started the song after visiting someone in hospital two years ago.
"I was walking down the corridor looking into the different rooms, some where you could see that things were bad and wouldn't improve. It hit me like a train."
Her brother, Dylan, features in the video, discussing his son Fionn, who died from meningitis the day before his first birthday.
"There was no indication that it would happen, we just woke up in the morning and he was gone," Stephanie said. "So it was a total shock, and turned everything upside down. I'm so proud of my brother for telling his story."
Stephanie thought about the format of the video for a long time, before approaching people that she knew had lost someone.
She said: "It took me a while to verbalise the idea, because I was afraid to see it through. I knew it would be difficult to ask people to do something like this, and I wanted to make sure it was done in a respectful way. So I thought about how I could achieve that for a long time before I went ahead. Some people said no, and I could totally understand why, because it was basically asking them to re-live a very difficult event and to write down how they felt. That's so hard. It was a huge ask."
"In the end though, what really surprised me was when the interview started, every single person told their story from beginning to end with no problem, restriction, or hesitation – just pure honesty."
"Being in that room was one the most humbling experiences of my life."
"My cousin, Kate O'Hara, is a producer and has worked on lots of shows. She interviewed each person, and she was amazing. She made everyone feel as comfortable as they could in that situation. It was such a tough job, so I owe a lot to her for being able to speak to people in a way that they felt they could be as honest as they were."
Since being uploaded to her Facebook page yesterday, the video has had 2 million views, and been shared over 33,000 times.
Stephanie said: "The success of the video is down to the nine people – John, Dylan, Donna, Cian, Moira, Gary, Teresa, Kate, and Tony – who dropped all their walls and showed the true face of loss. I'm getting hundreds of messages and thousands of comments from strangers telling me how much the song and the video has helped them. It's an amazing feeling and aside from being totally overwhelmed, I'm just so honoured."
"I hope the people in the video realise what they've done for people.
"Though it doesn't change what they've gone through, it's opened so many people up to each other, which is incredible."