In case you hadn’t heard, Stephen Sutton is a remarkable young man, a young man who has shown guts and resolve any man would be proud to possess. Stephen Sutton is dying as a result of colorectal cancer that quickly became incurable. The last 4 years has seen the 19 year old fighting cancer with everything he had, but the last few days have forced him to give a ‘final thumbs up’. This final thumbs up is aimed at everybody who has supported him from the moment of diagnosis, right through to the friends, followers and stars that have supported him in completing (and in some cases exceeding) his ‘bucket list’.
Stephen’s Bucket List
Stephen decided he would embark on a journey, a challenge of fulfilment which involved completing a set amount of challenges/ tasks/ adventures for self fulfilment, fun, and to help others…this young man is an inspiration:
- Raise £10,000 for the Teenage Cancer Trust
- Sky dive for charity
- Make a Bungee Jump for charity (at some place like the Macua Tower, Verzasca Dam, Victoria Falls etc)
- Organise a charity party
- Have a charity waxing and head shave
- Write a book
- Publish a ‘tumour humour’ book containing jokes, funny stories and anecdotes relating to cancer, so that people can look at the brighter side of life
- Organise a charity football match
- Do a charity hitch-hike visiting every Teenage Cancer Trust unit across the country
- Write, record and release a charity single with my old band
- Organise a charity gig
- Go busking, with money raised going to charity
- Persuade local schools to have a ‘get wiggy with it’ non-uniform day
- Stage charity quizzes in local pubs
- Organise a charity ball, including raffle etc
- Host a charity ‘Come Dine With Me’ dinner party for friends, where they pay as much or as little as they want (depending on how good the food is, I guess!)
- Organise, and be part of, a flash mob
- Organise a gigantic game of musical chairs or pass the parcel
- Go to carnival in Brazil
- Go to Wembley to see a football match
- Go to Twickenham to see a rugby match
- Fly somewhere first class
- Get a tattoo
- Play drums in front of a huge crowd
- Do some public speaking in front of a huge crowd
- Visit a famous waterfall
- Throw a massive party for all my friends
- Go on a ‘lads’ holiday’
- Go to Australia
- Hug an animal that is bigger than me
- Ride a Segway
- Go to a Skrillex concert
- Go see a darts competition
- Get my name in the Guinness World Book of Records somehow
- Go to CERN, home of the hadron collider, in Switzerland
- Meet comedian Jimmy Carr
- Go to another music festival, preferably Tomorrowland
- Find someone with more surgical scars than me. I have 47cm worth!
- Appear as an extra in a film or music video
- Get music comedian Tim Minchin to write a song for me
- Learn to juggle
- Inspire someone to be a doctor or fundraiser
- Have my portrait painted
- Crowd-surf in a rubber dinghy at a gig
- Try breathing in Xenon or sulphur dioxide and talking (it has the opposite effect of helium)
- Visit Machu Picchu
How he’s getting on…
Stephen has so far completed several tasks including meeting an elephant, delivering a speech to Downing Street, visiting Disney’s Magic Kingdom and watching England play at Wembley. He has continued to achieve above and beyond even his own expectations having now reached £2 million for the teenage cancer patient trust, double his original target. Such has been his popularity that donations were coming in at £1000 a minute!
You can’t fail to recognise a young man as incredible as Stephen, and consequently stars from around the world have reacted directly to his bucket list with the likes of Jimmy Carr visiting him and showing his support. He has also received support from the likes of Russell Brand, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and perhaps most notably Jason Manford. Jason Manford has taken to Stephens story so profoundly that he has been the driving force behind a social media wave of support that is #ThumbsUpForStephen campaign. The campaign is prompting people to ‘Txt STEPHEN to 70500 to donate £5’, and the momentum it has gathered has seen Stephen’s campaign go global!
Stephen’s final goodbye
Four years have passed since Stephen began fundraising for all kinds of causes, but more recently he posted saying ‘it’s a final thumbs up from me’…this heart wrenching post was Stephen’s way of saying I’ve done my bit, over to you. Jason Manford posted saying…
"Let's start a #ThumbsUpForStephen. He gave us one, let's give him one back. Here is mine, please do one, and post it on your Facebook or Twitter, or email at work and spread this remarkable boy's good work.
"Just a picture of a thumbs up and the information is good enough (I found it actually quite hard to do a thumbs up, hold a bit of paper and do a selfie!). So off you go team, it's with you now!"
Let’s keep it going for Stephen!