“I was the person who told my dad he had terminal lung cancer.
He’d been suffering with a persistent cough for some months as well as chest pains and breathlessness but he just shrugged them off. When he finally went for tests, it was too late. It had spread to his brain and nothing could be done.
He spent his final weeks at the Friends Hospice. It is some comfort to know he died with dignity.
My dad was more like a best friend to me. I had recently bought a small house out in France and we were renovating it together. It was taking longer than it should, mainly because we laughed more than we worked! That and dad was pretty accident prone! I remember him falling through a roof hatch, through a floor, even off a pub roof! He always seemed to bounce quite well though!
Dad was a grafter. He worked hard as a builder and electrician all his life. But he played hard too; he and mum always seemed to be on holiday. When he retired, he bought a rundown farmhouse out in Cyprus – he loved Cyprus. It took him a good few years to get it into shape but he got there and he and mum both retired there in 2006.
I miss the banter, the laughs, sharing beers. I miss the fact I can’t pick up the phone and ring him to find out how to wire a two-way dimmer switch. I missed him most at my wedding. He should have been there.Carl’s dad Tony was his best friend
I loved seeing them out in Cyprus. Dad would always have a cold beer waiting for me when I arrived.
They settled into their new life easily – dad was just that kind of person. He had a huge circle of friends. He was one of those guys who made friends effortlessly and was always on hand if anyone needed help.
And then he was gone.
Although mum misses him enormously, she has stayed out in Cyprus. That was where their life was. But I find it tough when I go out there to visit. It’s not the same. I miss the banter, the laughs, sharing beers. I miss the fact I can’t pick up the phone and ring him to find out how to wire a two-way dimmer switch.
I missed him most at my wedding. He should have been there.
So I want to do something that could mean someone else’s dad is at their wedding. I’ve done loads of really hard bike rides but have never done any running before. I like a challenge so I thought why not go the whole hog and take on the London Marathon! I also want the chance to beat Mo Farah!
Training has been really hard! I’ve been following a number of training plans which have been great but I didn’t allow for the numerous injuries – knee, ankle twice, Achilles and calf strain – rubbish British weather, man flu and a stomach bug! But hey, I said I like a challenge!
And if I get stuck halfway round, I’ll just start singing Roy Castle’s dedication song! You don’t get much more inspirational than that!”