Our friend Bedford Wolf is fundraising for the MacMillan Cancer Support charity by doing a Christmas Day swim in the North Sea – in his Wolves shirt.
David (Bedford) is doing it in memory of his wife Julie, who sadly passed away in July following a long battle with breast cancer.
Below are his own beautiful words about Julie, MacMillan and why he’s taking on the cold swim.
On 30th October 1978 Julie Gardner started work at Delta Enfield Rolling Mills where I was working. On 14th February 1979 we got engaged and were married on 8th September 1979. Four wonderful children came along – Janine in 1984, Daryl in 1986, Stephen in 1990 and Andrew in 1992. During that time we moved from Ware to Stevenage to Bedford where we have lived since 1991. In 2019 we celebrated our Ruby wedding anniversary.
In September 2001 at just 42 years of age Julie was diagnosed with breast cancer. After a mastectomy and radiotherapy she was eventually given the all clear in 2008. However in September 2010 Julie was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer – the same strain of cancer had returned but this time in her stomach area. An immediate course of chemotherapy followed and again in 2016 along with more radiotherapy all in an effort to keep the disease at bay for as long as possible. By this time we knew it couldn’t be cured. The pain and stress was only really lightened by seeing our children growing up and getting married and the arrival of our fabulous grandchildren – Harry in 2014, Rose in 2016, Stanley in 2017 and Arthur in 2018. A fifth is due in February 2021.
In January this year Julie’s condition worsened considerably and in June we were told there was nothing more that could be done. On Friday 24th July Julie, at just 61 years of age, passed away.
During her last few months with us the MacMillan Cancer Support people were fantastic and I really do not know what we would have done without them. It is entirely thanks to them that Julie got her wish and when she passed away it was at our home surrounded by her loving family.
In recent years we became enamoured by the Suffolk seaside town of Southwold and went there at least two or three times a year. For the past three years we have spent Christmas in Southwold, hiring a big house so that all the family can come and spend Christmas together. We are booked to go again this Christmas,
On Christmas Day there is an annual Southwold Christmas Day swim in the sea for charity. Sadly this year it has been cancelled due to Covid-19 but I will be doing my own personal swim in the sea on Christmas Day and am doing so to try and raise as much money as I can for MacMillan Cancer Support. I am doing it for them and in memory of my beautiful wife Julie (aka Jude) who meant the world to me and always will. Wife, Mum and Grandma.
Always and Forever. x