John was many things – some expressions that describe him include: hard working, ambitious, visionary, positive, dynamic, cheeky, persistent, determined, undeterred, stubborn and, sometimes, irritating. He was also a completely honest, kind, caring, charming, funny, unassuming and proud man who loved to live his life to the full.
A mixture of such characteristics is rarely found in successful businessmen and they are something that made John very special. A loving husband and devoted father to his two girls and son, John’s other great passion was business, particularly the steel business. The UK steel distribution business was his stage – and he made a huge success of the numerous opportunities that in many cases he created with his vision, ambition and drive. John was one of the most successful and respected individuals within the business and, over a period of 25 years or so, he developed no fewer than three separate businesses into market leaders that were the envy of the whole sector. Following his retirement he turned his business skills to establishing a successful commercial property business in the Worcester area – “there is no future in retirement” he used to say and, typically, he continued to work during his last few tortuous months.
“John’s family have set up a fund in his memory in the hope that in the future treatments can be developed to cure tumours so that other families don’t have to endure the pain of losing a loved one”
It was a blind spot in his eyesight and a problem with balance that sent John to the doctor who initially diagnosed a possible ear infection. The symptoms progressed rapidly over the next two weeks to the point where John’s family insisted he must have a scan immediately. A GBM grade 4 was found and Professor Garth Cruikshank performed a 5 hour operation the following day and removed most of the tumour. The family were told after the operation that had they not operated, John would probably have died within two days. He was placed on a course of chemo‘ and radiotherapy during the spring of 2006 and this allowed John to have a fantastic few months with the whole family getting together for a very special, and last, Christmas.
John sadly lost his battle on January 1st 2007. During his ordeal he never lost his determination, sense of humour or positive outlook. Even as his mobility was reduced and life became increasingly difficult he still didn’t complain, other than out of frustration because he couldn’t continue with his work.