Keith’s lasting gift for future research
“I have decided to leave a gift in my Will to The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, because The Royal Marsden saved my life.”
“In 2013 I was diagnosed with a bone marrow cancer called myeloma. The first signs were pins and needles in my feet which kept me awake at night – I was lucky that my local GP really looked into this and gave me a few rounds of blood tests.
I went to the GP for my results and she said, “there is no easy way to tell you this, but you have an incurable cancer”. When I was told the news it was a surreal moment. I was quickly put on a fast track for chemotherapy treatment and then when I was ready for a stem cell transplant, I was referred to The Royal Marsden.
Everyone in the NHS has been wonderful throughout my treatment, but at The Royal Marsden they were exceptional. They were so kind and helpful – everything you could wish for. The stem cell harvesting was done on my birthday and the following week I received the reimplantation. I have always wondered how these cells, injected back into my bloodstream, manage to rebuild the bone marrow inside my bones. It’s just amazing.
My stem cell transplant was a success although the cancer I had was classed as incurable but treatable.
After three and a half years I relapsed and was put on a brand new drug to treat the cancer. After a further whole year in remission, I recently found out I have relapsed again.
I don’t know what drugs I will be given this time but I do know that the amazing research into myeloma is creating new treatment options all the time. As with my last relapse, I will be monitored to determine when and what my treatment will be.
Two years after I went into remission, my wife and I decided to take part in The Marsden March and raised £3,500. It was 14 miles and I was still physically weak but we had trained for it. The final mile was exhausting for me. However, the magical part of that day – and something that will live in my memory – was the final 50 yards to the hospital. It was then that I looked up and saw the window of my room where I’d had my stem cell transplant two years earlier. Being back at The Royal Marsden was very emotional as everything I had been through came together in that moment.
Last year, my wife and I decided we wanted to update our Will and leave a gift to the Charity. Firstly, it was another way of saying thank you for the fantastic treatment and for saving my life. Secondly, I wanted to help the hospital carry out research in the future. It felt like the right place for our gift.
I wanted to leave a gift in our Wills to one of the many cancer charities and the minute I saw The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity provided a free Will-writing service, it made the decision for me. It’s great that the Charity offers this service. I was impressed by the information provided and how easy the process was. It was quick, simple and straightforward. Once we had signed the Wills, it was done and no longer a worry for us.
It’s more important than ever that The Royal Marsden can continue their research and I’m proud to have left a gift in my Will to the Charity.”
Writing or updating your Will couldn’t be easier with our Free Will Service and by including a gift like Keith, you can make a vital difference to the lives of cancer patients, long into the future. If you’d like to find out more about writing your Will for free, you can sign up here.
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