Jon Fleming, of Coalsnaughton, combed his hair into an impressive quiff to demonstrate one of the ways people can help raise money for vital research and fight against the disease. All over Scotland, people are planning to stand their hair up on end and create outrageous hairstyles to show their support for Stand Up To Cancer. And as The King of impressive hair styles, Jon, who is otherwise known as Johnny Lee Memphis, was among the first to take part.
Stand Up To Cancer is being brought to the UK for the first time by Cancer Research UK and Channel 4. It will unite scientists, celebrities and communities in Scotland and across the county to generate funds, raise awareness and bring forward the day when all cancers are cured. A host of stars from television, music and film are already supporting Stand Up To Cancer. including Gwyneth Paltrow, Alan Carr, Davina McCall and Embarrassing Bodies’ Dr. Christian Jessen. In October, Channel 4’s on-air season will build over a whole week culminating in a live fundraising entertainment extravaganza on Friday, October 19.
This is also a special night for Jon, who will be taking Johnny Lee Memphis to Alloa Town Hall for a much anticipated show where he will showcase the King’s greatest hits. Jon, 37, who won the Elvis World Cup two years ago, has a poignant reason to join the celebrity line up in support of the fundraising drive. Sadly, Jon’s father John Fleming, died when he was just 62-years-old. His family didn’t discover he had cancer until after his death in 2009.
Jon said: “One of the hardest things for me is that my dad wasn’t around to see me win the Elvis World Cup."
As part of his day job as assistant manager of the Bo'ness Gym, Jon see's many cancer rehab patients being referred by their GP where his colleague Suzanne works hard to make life better for people affected by cancer. Among the regular visitors at the Bo'ness recreation centre are people recovering from cancer who have been referred into a special fitness programme by their GPs.
“He loved my Elvis act and was a big believer in making the most of every moment and so when I got the chance to start touring across the world after winning, I knew he would have wanted me to go for it.
“I also know how hard cancer can hit a family and so I want to do what I can to encourage people in Scotland to Stand Up To Cancer by helping us raise money for vital research.
“We need them to join us and stand shoulder to shoulder in the fight against a disease which affects one in three people in the UK at some stage in their lives.”
As well as organising their own fundraising or hair-raising events, supporters can pop into their local Cancer Research UK shop where a wide range of striking Stand Up To Cancer T-shirts and hoodies are available in different styles for men and women. A fun, fashionable and affordable range of accessories is also on offer, with funky watches in bold colours, pin badges, key rings and travel mugs – so there’s something for everyone. People of all ages can also show their allegiance by purchasing a Stand Up To Cancer Wristband, in five different colours, for just £1 each. They are available now at Cancer Research UK shops and will be on sale at Tesco and TK Maxx stores from October.
Linda Summerhayes, Cancer Research UK’s spokeswoman in Scotland, said: “We are calling on everyone in Scotland to unite with people across the UK and stand up to this devastating disease. Every hour, around three people are diagnosed with cancer in Scotland*. Thanks to the incredible progress made in the last 40 years, more people are surviving than ever before. But there’s still so much more to do. It’s not just technology or knowledge that we need to win our fight to beat cancer – it’s funding."
“We are entering a ‘golden age’ of cancer research and every pound we raise takes us a step closer to achieving our goal to beat this disease. By boosting funding right now, the best research teams will be able to develop new treatments, bring cures faster and save more lives.”
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Friday, 12th October 2012