July 2, 2022

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Lanarkshire pensioner set to trek West Highland Way in memory of brother

3 min read

A Lanarkshire pensioner is taking on the West Highland Way this summer in memory of his brother who died of pancreatic cancer.

Frankie King was just 51 when he sadly passed away from the illness – now brother James wants to raise awareness of the “silent killer” whilst raising money for charity.

It will be the fourth time the 75-year-old from Blantyre has taken on the incredible feat, which takes up to a week to complete.

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But this time he will be supported by his nephew, John Paul King, from Cleland, who will be with his uncle every step of the way.

The pair will be marking 10 years since the passing of their beloved Frankie and will be wearing t-shirts displaying his picture and their chosen charity – Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund.

So far through the online fundraiser and sponsor sheets, James and John Paul have raised over £600, with over two months to go until they conquer the West Highland Way.

James told Lanarkshire Live : “It’s the two of us doing it for research into pancreatic cancer to try and look into it more because it’s the silent killer they call it. By the time you’re diagnosed with it, it’s too late.

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Frankie King

“My younger brother Frankie died of it 10 years ago and we have t-shirts with pictures of him on it to wear while we’re doing the walk.

“It will be in memory of Frankie.

“John Paul was desperate to do the West Highland Way this time so we decided to do it together. I’m an avid hill walker so I’m still pretty active.

“We trained earlier this week but what a hard day it was. We still have eight weeks to go so we’ll be ready for it.”

Already, the fundraiser has received an overwhelming response as the community gets behind the Lanarkshire duo ahead of the challenge on June 6.

And James says it means a lot to be able to do such a gesture for family, with family.

He added: “It’s fantastic doing it with family.

“John Paul is the son of my other brother who has sadly passed away as well. I’m glad I’ve got him into walking now, he’s definitely got the bug for it.

“We’ve raised over £550 on the JustGiving page but we also have sponsor sheets with over £100 there too so it’s fantastic how much has been raised so far.

“There’s that many charities on the go right now, and for people to take the time out and donate especially while the cost of living is constantly rising is fantastic. Even people I don’t even know is supporting us.

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“It means an awful lot, and I’m pretty sure a lot of people have been touched by this disease.

And if any money can go towards that and help one person, I’ll be highly delighted.”

You can donate to James and John Paul’s fundraising page online here.

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