After John was faced with the devastating news that his cancer was terminal, he refused to accept it, and ultimately ended up participating in a clinical trial that has extended his life greatly.
After John was faced with the devastating news that his cancer was terminal, he refused to accept it, and ultimately ended up participating in a clinical trial that has extended his life greatly; enabling him to see his sons through their education, qualify in their respected professions, get married and have children.
John was subsequently rushed into hospital several times after passing blood, with specialists discovering a tumour on his kidney which had to be removed.
“I was rushed into hospital two or three times and they couldn’t find out what it was. However, eventually they found that the problem was a tumour on my kidney, which had to be removed.
“Unfortunately, 18 months or so further down the line I found out I’d got secondary cancer on my lung and bone at the top of my leg, and my stomach.
“At the time, there was no treatment as such that would help.”
However, Professor Barry Hancock – Vice Chairman and former Trustee at Weston Park Cancer Charity – contacted John to see if he would be interested in a drug trial which may help his situation.
John agreed to take part in the trial of a drug called Interferon, which at the time was starting to show real promise with boosting the immune system against cancer.
John said: “Prof Hancock asked me if I wanted to do a drug trial which obviously I agreed to do.
“You’re a layman and you haven’t got a clue what it is, but I was just happy to be doing something that could prolong my life."
Prof Hancock added: “The amazing thing was that John firstly tolerated the treatment.
“And secondly that scans after a few months showed that the disease was stable. Six months later, the lesions were smaller and then we did a scan after the treatment.
“He has had scans since and has remained completely clear.
“You could call that a miracle. But the miracle was the drug that he had, which he could only have because he was part of a clinical trial.
“And he could only have that clinical trial because Sheffield was part of the national trial.”
Since his treatment, John has worked tirelessly to repay the cost of the life-changing clinical drug which he received at Weston Park, which is one of just four purpose-built cancer centres in the UK.
John said: “I asked how much the drug trial cost and they said £100,000.
“I suppose they’ve heard it many times before, but I said I’m going to raise you that back.”
To date, John has raised over £300,000 for Weston Park Cancer Charity through a huge variety of events including his now infamous golf tournaments.
“I’ve paid it back and will continue to thank them,” said John.
“The only thing that ever ever ever gets to me and upsets me is thinking back to having to tell the boys that daddy weren’t going to be around much longer. But he is – and I can’t thank Weston Park enough.”