A teenager diagnosed with bone cancer says he has drawn inspiration from fellow fundraiser Stephen Sutton whose positive outlook helped raise more than £3.5 million for charity.
Jacob Simpson was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer discovered in his right leg, in August last year. The cancer was also found in his lungs.
He has just started a less aggressive form of chemotherapy at Leeds General Infirmary and receives treatment once every three weeks, as well as daily radiotherapy.
Stephen Sutton, 19, from Staffordshire, died on Wednesday after losing his battle with bowel cancer. He won a place in the nation’s hearts in the last few weeks of his life and has so far raised more than £3.5 million for the Teenage Cancer Trust.
Now Jacob, 18, says Stephen’s fundraising has spurred him on to raise even more cash for the same charity.
The Bradford branch of Specsavers, in Darley Street, helped towards the £8,135 raised at the event – which went to the Teenage Cancer Trust – with a photo booth.
Jacob said: “Stephen Sutton was a real inspiration to everyone, including me. The things Stephen did were absolutely amazing.
“As someone who has been affected by cancer, I know where the money he raised will go. He has inspired me to do more for the Teenage Cancer Trust.
“If anything Stephen’s story has helped raise more money for Jacob’s Ball.
“The Teenage Cancer Trust seems to be the first charity that isn’t just about curing cancer, it’s about giving people who suffer from it a better time.
“Stephen’s family have been great in supporting him.”
Jacob, of Yate Lane, Oxenhope, will be re-sitting his A-levels in Psychology, Media and Biology at North Halifax Grammar School next year.
He said: “The support I’ve had from friends, family and even complete strangers has been absolutely amazing.
“I just want to get the chemotherapy out of the way now, I’m nearing the end of it. I’m focusing on that. I want to get back to normal.
“This has been the first time in my life that I’ve been missing school.
“It’s been really hard. The worst thing has been the monotony of going into hospital for treatment.
“Life’s too short, I just want to have some fun. I’m keeping positive.
“There are plans for us to organise another ball in a couple of years time.”
For more information, visit jacobsball.org.uk.