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Local News

Inspirational 94-year-old refuses ‘heavy duty’ terminal cancer treatment to complete Doncaster Lakeside walk daily instead


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An inspirational 94-year-old has taken on a daily walking challenge, despite being diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Alan Bocking, who lives in Doncaster, was diagnosed with stomach cancer in August this year and was told that he would “not see [his] next birthday”.

But Alan, who turns 95 next month, decided that, instead of having “heavy duty” treatment, he would throw himself into fundraising for Macmillan Cancer Care, instead.

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The father of three and grandfather of five said: “I decided to turn my diagnosis from bad news to good news and now I focus my energy on raising money for Macmillan in the time I have left.

“I’ve been overwhelmed by the support and encouragement my family and friends have given me.”

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Alan’s daughter, Chris Fraser, 64, told YorkshireLive : “I think he’s brilliant, if I had any doubts about his stoicism [I don’t now]. He’s a bit of a one off really.

“He’s got a lot of drive and what I admire most is he’s somebody who could have just given up and he’s found a way to go out with a great hurrah.”

Chris said that she was in the meeting with doctors when they told her dad that his cancer was terminal and she said that he was told not to expect to live much longer.

She said: “He wasn’t given very much hope really, I was in the meeting with him and they said ‘you won’t see your next birthday’.

“It’s [the cancer] in his stomach and growing into the oesophagus and that means, ultimately, he won’t be able to swallow food. So, while he can still manage, he’s not having any treatment and is keeping going on.”

Alan, a former Royal Marine, has always led an active lifestyle and used to enjoy cycling and skiing in his younger days.

Alan and his wife, skiing in the 1950s
Alan and his wife, skiing in the 1950s

In fact, Alan and his wife, whom he has been married to since 1954, used to go skiing in the hills around Sheffield – a pasttime that he continued well into his 70s.

And the 94-year-old has long enjoyed walking the Doncaster Lakeside circular walk, the same route that he is now walking for charity.

Alan will be walking half a mile of the route every single day until his 95 birthday, on January 5, and his efforts have already raised a staggering £7,853 for Macmillan.

And far from only raising money for charity, Chris said that his daily walks are keeping him in good shape so that he is as healthy as can be expected for a man with cancer.

She said: “We thought that he’d need to enter treatment by now but we’re not at that stage yet, we had thought this would be his last Christmas but I’m starting to think that may not be the case…”

If you would like to donate to Alan’s fundraiser, you can do so here.

Written by: Rother Radio News

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