Bereaved family calls for more government spending on cancer care and treatment

Bereaved family calls for more government spending on cancer care and treatment

Bereaved family call for more government spending on cancer care and treatment

Aaron and Owen with their mum Becki

First published in Health Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Feature Writer

A WIDOWER and his two young sons are campaigning for the Government to spend more money on research and treating cancer.

Becki Drabble was just 45 when she died of cancer on September 6 leaving behind her husband Gerald and two boys, Aaron, 11, and Owen, seven.

The family from Fareham has set up Becki’s Legacy in her memory, to call for the Government to dramatically increase the amount of money it spends on cancer care and are hoping to get enough signatures on a petition to force a debate on the matter in the Houses of Parliament.

Becki, a full-time mum, was first diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2008, following a routine smear test.

She had major surgery to remove the cancer as well as a course of radiotherapy but was left with bowel and kidney problems following the treatment.

After a clear year in 2009, further surgery followed in 2010. She spent much of 2012 going in and out of hospital with kidney infections.

Early in September, after seeing both her sons start at their new schools, she was taken into hospital and died the following night.

“She was very accepting of death,” says Gerald.

“She was a vicar’s daughter. She knew she would be reunited with her mum again. We spent the day with her and said our goodbyes.”

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Aaron says: “She was a bright person. She was fun.

She liked making cakes. She just took the cancer as it came and said when her time came, it came. She didn’t make a fuss – she just got on with it.”

“We want to keep her memory alive and that’s why we have started Becki’s Legacy – to try to get more funding for cancer treatment in the NHS,” says Gerald.

They are calling for 30 per cent of all NHS money to be spent on cancer treatment.

“Dare I say it, but there are people with self-inflicted problems like obesity who are costing the NHS I don’t know how many hundreds of thousands a year and they seem to get priority over patients with cancer.

“I know the Government is making all these cuts but healthcare, education and law and order should be the top priorities.

“I’d like to see the Government doing more through the NHS rather than being so reliant on outside organisations like Macmillan and Cancer Research UK.”

The family is also fundraising in Becki’s name for Macmillan Cancer Support and The Rowans Hospice, which has been helping the family since Becki’s death.

“We’re a very close family,” says Gerald.

“The memory of her will never die. The campaigning helps keep her alive.”

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