5 June 2018 | Comment | Article by Mary Mulhall
Stephen Hoadley, a 63 year old carpenter, sadly died in August 2017 only five months after being diagnosed with sarcomatoid mesothelioma. Stephen was an otherwise extremely fit and healthy man.
Following his development of sarcomatoid mesothelioma, the most aggressive of the three types of mesothelioma, his health deteriorated significantly and he gave up his fight surrounded by his family.
Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that affects the pleura (the layers of tissue that cover the lung) and less commonly the peritoneum (the membrane that forms the lining of the abdominal cavity). Asbestos exposure is the only known cause of mesothelioma and is thought to be responsible for the vast majority of cases. A diagnosis with mesothelioma is often associated with an occupational history of asbestos exposure.
Like many families of those who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, Stephen’s wife and three children had never heard of this rare cancer, affecting only 2,500 people in the UK each year. Daughter Marie and son Jason are now raising awareness of the disease and are raising money for the UK’s biggest mesothelioma charity; Mesothelioma UK. Marie and Jason will be taking part in the Mongol Rally, a 10,000 mile journey in an old Bedford van. Starting in Europe on 13 July they will drive through 19 countries before ending somewhere in Siberia on 19 August.
All funds raised will go towards supporting those people suffering with mesothelioma, and for research into a cure for this devastating asbestos related cancer. Marie and Jason are covering all costs associated with the trip themselves and all funds raised will go to Mesothelioma UK. They were able to share their plans with their father before he died and will now be completing the trip in his memory.
Marie has been speaking to us about the rally and what it means to them:
“As leaving day gets closer we are nervous and excited. We make our preparations for this great trip whilst thinking about Dad and knowing we are raising funds for a great charity. Mesothelioma UK is very important to people after their initial diagnosis; we were particularly lucky to have the support of a Mesothelioma Nurse Specialist. The aim is to increase awareness of this lung cancer and give patients access to treatments, trials and care. Please support ‘Chippy’s Little Rascals’ on our journey.”
To support this daring fundraising endeavour, you can do so here.
Mary Mulhall, Senior Associate at Hugh James, is representing Stephen’s family in a claim against his former employers who it is alleged are responsible for exposing him to asbestos many years ago.