Cancer-beating granddad cycling from Twickenham to Tokyo

11 February 2019 08:24

Japan will play host to the 2019 Rugby World Cup

Japan will play host to the 2019 Rugby World Cup

A grandfather who has battled three types of cancer is cycling from Twickenham to Tokyo in time for the Rugby World Cup - all in aid of charity.

Patrick McIntosh will leave Twickenham Stadium in early May and set off on a 7,192 mile, four-and-a-half-month journey across Europe and Russia, following the original Trans-Siberian Railway route between St Petersburg to Vladivostok.

The 62-year-old hopes to arrive in Tokyo on September 20, just in time for the Rugby World Cup's opening fixture between hosts Japan and Russia.

Mr McIntosh, who has undergone several rounds of treatment for bowel, prostate and skin cancer, hopes to raise funds for the World Cancer Research Fund and St Catherine's Hospice charities.

Diagnosed

Mr McIntosh, a chartered financial adviser from Smallfield in Surrey,

was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2012 after trying to give blood but realising his iron levels were too low.

Surgeons immediately operated and removed 17 inches of bowel, but Mr McIntosh then found out he had skin and prostate cancer - both of which also required surgery.

He said: "When it was discovered I had bowel cancer, the doctor told me that I shouldn't even have been standing up - I'd been bleeding internally.

"Doctors operated almost immediately, removing parts of my large and small intestines, stomach muscles and five lymph nodes.

"I thought my journey with cancer was over and seven months later I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in three days.

"However, after a series of more tests in spring 2013, I was diagnosed with very progressive prostate cancer and underwent a seven-hour operation to remove my prostate, along with more 'pipe work', muscles and lymph nodes.

"I was later diagnosed with skin cancer, which I still have and is ongoing, but I get regular check-ups to keep it under control."

At first, doctors thought the cancers were unconnected but Mr McIntosh has since been diagnosed with Lynch syndrome and Muir-Torre syndrome (a subset of Lynch syndrome), inherited disorders that increase the risk of some cancers.

"Huge rugby fan"

Discussing his trip, Mr McIntosh said: "I'm a huge rugby fan so I thought why not cycle to Japan in time for the Rugby World Cup?

"Thankfully, I have my friend Glenn who will be following me in our camper van, along with our Russian bodyguard who will hopefully protect us.

"More and more people are likely to live until they are 100, so I am trying to get the message out that we have a choice whether to remain fit and healthy into old age, or not look after ourselves and suffer later."

His fundraising page is https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/PatrickMcIntoshLifeCycle.

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