‘Big John’ gets the chop for the Chemo Appeal

John Ziepke aftre losing eight months of hair and beard for the Chemotherapy Appeal. John Ziepke aftre losing eight months of hair and beard for the Chemotherapy Appeal.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013
3:31 PM

Bideford cancer survivor says a huge ‘thank you’ to everyone who has helped in his quest to raise money for the North Devon Chemotherapy Appeal.

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John pictured with his wife Malinda.John pictured with his wife Malinda.

A hair-raising total of more than £1,000 has been raised for the North Devon Chemotherapy Appeal by John Ziepke of Bideford after putting an impressive eight months of beard up for the chop.

John and his wife Malinda would like to say a massive thank you to all those who turned out for the big event at Bideford Angling Club on February 2.

They are also hugely grateful to all the local businesses and people too numerous to mention who donated money, their time, goods and services to support the event and a raffle on the night.

Double cancer survivor John knows better than most the need for a new chemotherapy unit in the region and is keen to support the appeal – on March 9 John will also be doing a sponsored walk along the foreshore from Clovelly to Westward Ho! and hopes as many as possible will join him.

John was diagnosed with the rare and fast-growing Burkett’s lymphoma in 1999, undergoing an intensive chemotherapy schedule in Barnstaple and Plymouth.

He had a Hickman line fitted and ended up in intensive care with a large blood clot. He was off work for a year and lost around five stone.

Then in 2011 he again contracted cancer; this time he had to travel to Exeter hospital once a week for chemo and every day for radiotherapy.

Thankfully he is now in remission.

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