Home   News   Article

Cancer patient Julia Stathern of Oakham has her bucket list wish granted by strangers as they arrange a helicopter flight

A cancer patient will fulfil one of her lifelong ambitions thanks to the kindness of strangers.

Oakham woman Julia Stathem will take a helicopter flight this weekend after receiving a gift voucher from a couple she met in the pub.

The 48-year-old has terminal cancer of the oesophagus which she mentioned to the couple when they met a few months back.

Julia and Barrie Stathem with their dog Bertie (9462343)
Julia and Barrie Stathem with their dog Bertie (9462343)

She said: “We were sitting at our local pub after a dog walk and we got talking to Dave and Deb. We got onto helicopter rides and I mentioned that riding in one was something that I would love to do.”

Julia left the pub with her husband Barrie and thought no more about the conversation until an envelope arrived on her doormat with a voucher for a helicopter flight.

She said: "I couldn’t believe it. It’s never really sunk in that two people could do this. I can’t thank them enough - this is so much more than a helicopter ride.”

The gesture has given Julia a new lease of life. After a period of staying at home watching television, she is now focussing on enjoying the time she has left.

She said: “My whole outlook on life has changed. I now spend time making memories with Barrie and planning things we can do together.

"Dave and Deb have given me this chance."

Julia and Barrie have been a couple for 25 years and married three years ago.

She was diagnosed with cancer last year.

Julia said: “It’s the little things in life that make such a difference not only to my well-being but to being a wife to Barrie again."

Julia has already drawn up some more experiences for her bucket list and hopes her next adventure will be riding on the back of a motorbike.

She is also raising money for the Loros hospice in Leicester where she has received care and support since her diagnosis.

Julia said: “Loros is magical and that’s just the way I feel about it.

“For me, Loros has helped me deal with the pain, which has given me freedom; a freedom to live my life again.”

Statistics from Cancer Research UK show there are around 9,000 new cases of oesophageal cancer in the UK every year - the equivalent of 25 every day. It is the 13th most common cancer.

To find out how you can support the Loros hospice in Leicester click here.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More