Hopes for Disney trip after Pevensey dad's devastating diagnosis

A Pevensey dad's family are raising money to take him on a trip to Disney World after he was diagnosed with incurable cancer.

Thursday, 7th June 2018, 4:54 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th June 2018, 6:08 pm
Richard, Gemma and Chloe

Richard Kent, 32, was given the devastating news just a few weeks ago that he only has about two years to live.

Now his loved ones are fundraising to take him, his wife Gemma, and their five-year-old daughter Chloe on the trip of a lifetime.

Richard has been fighting bowel cancer for six months, but was told on May 24 his treatment has been unsuccessful.

Richard and Chloe

Gemma said, “The latest news came as a huge blow to us. Richard is still very much determined to beat it.

“The thought of losing my best friend and husband and being a single mum and lonely is utterly terrifying and quite frankly overwhelming. It hurts like nothing else.

“But we are trying to do as much now as we can and it is a wonderful thing that Helen and Neil, who set up the fundraiser, are doing for us.”

She said going to Disney World in Florida would be ‘everything’ to the family, which is now coping on just Gemma’s salary.

Richard Kent with his wife Gemma and daughter Chloe

The mum said, “It’s really humbling. I am staggered by the generosity of those around us from friends, family and complete strangers.

“When you are told that you have two years to live all you want to do is enjoy yourself and make memories.

“Richard is desperate to do as much as he can with Chloe now and Disney is high up there on his bucket list to see her have the time of her life and make some amazing memories.”

Gemma said Richard first started noticing symptoms in April 2017. Between then and November she said he went to see several doctors who thought it was just IBS.

“He went to A&E about a dozen times if not more,” she said, “the pain was constant, they were refusing to do anything.”

Then, on November 11 she said he was taken into hospital again and a doctor said ‘this isn’t right’. Richard had a CT scan and the tumour was discovered.

Gemma said, “It could have saved Rich’s life if they’d just done a CT scan earlier.

“I will always have that regret. We both knew something was wrong, but you tend to just listen to the professionals. If you have that instinct then push it.”

Gemma has written a candid blog about their experience, which has been read by people around the world more than 5,000 times.

She said it first started as a way to vent her feelings, but she quickly realised people going through the same thing found it useful.

“There are lots of young women out there going through the same thing,” Gemma said, “you feel like you are the only young woman going through it but it’s so important to see you are not alone.”

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