Late September 2014 , my father, Jeff Cooper, was diagnosed with Oesophageal Cancer. This was obviously a shock, as is anything with the word 'cancer'. As a family, we have never heard of Oesophageal Cancer and as soon as we found out, as many would do, we all Googled what it meant and how it can be treated. This did not help as the results are shocking and survival rates of this type of cancer are very low. Too low for 2014!
In October 2014 we were delivered the news that this cancer was incurable. Again, another blow, but as a positive person, I believed we could manage his cancer and hopefully have a a reasonable amount of time with a fit, 53 year old strong man. I was confident in this day of age the treatment given to my dad would help.
In November 2014 we, as a family, were delivered the kind of news a family would never want to receive. The doctors informed us that there was nothing else they could do and that the cancer had spread, not just to his liver, but to his lungs. All forms of chemotherapy would stop and it was now just a case of managing his pain. The doctor informed us we'd be lucky if dad would make Christmas. My dad, as the type of person he was said, "It's s**t isn't it. I'm buggered" and hugged my mother who has was with him every step.
I was there the exact second he was given the news. The sort of man he was, he didn't cry, didn't moan, didn't swear at the fate he had been given, just hugged my my mum to try comfort her. That was the sort of bloke he was.
Dad wanted to come home and on December 6th 2014 at 1925 hours, after a short but brave fight, my father passed away with myself, my brother, sister and wife all alongside him along with our respective partners who he loved as much as us.
This just shows how quick this awful disease can take a 16 stone, strong man away from us. The worrying thing though is that this cancer has a very low survival rate and has very low awareness. This charity is working with the medical professionals to try raise awareness along with the government. They also support patients and carers with this form of cancer which because of its rarity, is pretty much unheard of. In January 2015 there will be a big press campaign about this cancer, but unfortunately for us, this was too late. We do not want anybody to go through the pain that we have endured.
We are determined as a family to raise awareness along with this charity and we will be taking part in many sponsored events, such as the Yorkshire Warrior and other challenges.
Love you dad
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