In the beginning of the year 1837 tidings reached him of the illness of his mother, and he prepared to go to Plymouth to see her. Whilst packing his portmanteau he felt convinced that he should only arrive home to find his mother dead. There was nothing alarming in the letter, but he began to realize it was God's voice to him. The tedious coach journey was accomplished, and, as he had surmised, his mother had departed. Falling down on his knees by her coffin alone that night he cried out.