The family of a Hunslet man, now living in Sarlat, France is carrying on the fight against cancer whilst commemorating a father lost to prostate cancer last year.
The late Roy Bowen, educated at Leeds Grammar School, is buried in Sarlat, the town he loved best after Leeds. After school Roy joined the RAF before a long career with Bourne Leisure in Poole, Dorset, working also on Canada’s Lake Erie and in Florida.
Roy’s widow, Terri, and his son, Christopher, 36, have decided to mark his passing with an effort to help the battle against cancer.
Christopher, who lives in Winchester, is to mark the course of his father’s life in an over 1,500-mile marathon sponsored bike-ride in 15 days during August.
‘Ride for Roy’ starts in Seeboden, Austria, where Roy was born in 1946 to a German mother and a British father. He rides next to Bruggen, where Roy served in the RAF, then to Rotterdam for a ferry to the UK.
The next leg comes to Leeds where Roy grew up in Hunslet, then on to Poole where Roy and Terri met, married in 1999, and lived. Christopher then crosses the Channel via St Malo, thanks to Brittany Ferries, and with 370 miles ahead of him, presses onto his mum’s home in Sarlat le Canéda, in the Dordogne.
The Bowens’ aim is to raise £10,000 destined for cancer charities in France and the UK. Roy died from prostate cancer.
In Roy’s case, the early stages were not picked up by a GP in the UK and Roy was eventually diagnosed with Advanced Prostate Cancer.
“The standard of care dad got in France was superb, but unfortunately not soon enough.”
“Many men don’t realise that this cancer can be beaten. But it is important to get it under surveillance even from before it starts. That might sound crazy, but there is a very simple and cheap way to diagnose the start before there any symptoms, using a PSA blood test. If the test is positive, then they use a process called the Gleason system to work out the best kind of treatment.
“Here in France the PSA is a routine part of most GPs’ regular “bilan de santé”, a bit like a whole- body MOT. We hope this small effort will help raise the profile of this type of cancer and spread the word about how easily it can be diagnosed and treated.”
Terri and Christopher are anxious that the fund-raising part of the marathon should be a success and welcome any pledges and donations, all of which will go to the fight against cancer. Christopher added:
“On Saturday 16th August mum wants to arrange a little welcome party at La Lanterne as in Sarlat as I ride in. We hope to get some local people to round-off the trip. It would be terrific if anybody from Leeds on holiday could be there, too.”
CSF (Cancer Support France) will be there. A partner with La Ligue Contre le Cancer, CSF supports English-speaking sufferers and their families across France.
To contact Terri email Info@sarlat.biz; To contact Christopher email firstname.lastname@example.org To make a donation: http://www.justgiving.com/RidingforRoy To learn more about Prostate cancer: http://www.macmillan.org.uk