Kippford man to front bowel cancer publicity campaign

Not just a survivor but a fighter, John Withers and proud wife Sharon
Not just a survivor but a fighter, John Withers and proud wife Sharon

A Kippford woman spoke movingly this week about her pride in her husband for turning tables on the dreaded disease of bowel cancer.

Not only has Sharon Withers’ hubby John beaten his own cancer, he has now gone onto the attack to help other sufferers to become survivors.

His tale is so inspirational, the charity Bowel Cancer UK is now using his case in a national publicity campaign to urge others to do the one most important thing he did to still be alive today - swallow the fear for what the results might be and get tested for bowel cancer.

Retired civil engineer John did that when he was 60 and he is now a healthy, active 70 year-old with a very, very proud 68 year-old wife, not a grieving widow.

After a test gave early warning of the disease, John underwent surgery - which led to the discovery of another dangerous tumour!

Recalled Sharon: “I was surprised at how well he handled it all as he’s always been a rather squeamish person when it comes to anything remotely medical, but he totally took it in his stride.

“He was really focused on recovery and setting himself targets.

“Our sons and I are just amazed and incredibly proud of how he’s dealt with everything.”

As well as promoting Bowel Cancer UK, John works as a volunteer at the Macmillan Cancer and Information Centre at Dumfries & Galloway Royal Infirmary.

“He is also tirelessly spreading the message about getting checked out so that cancer can be detected and fought in time.

Sharon said: “He’s been all over the country doing his talks. Even when he was still in hospital he decided he wanted to get involved somehow and give something back.”