A man well known in the Todmorden and Hebden Bridge crown green bowling world has completed a Cystic Fibrosis fundraising mission.
Keith Rudman, of Walsden, was born with the genetic disease on July 19, 1963, and has defied by medical opinion by celebrating his 54th birthday in 2107. Experts told his parents shortly after his birth that he would not reach the age of 20.
As he approached his landmark 50th birthday, Keith was inspired to compile his biography Living With A Killer helped by bowling friend Steve McHugh, a former Manchester Evening News journalist.
It was designed to raise funds for the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Unit at Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester, where Keith regularly undergoes lengthy bouts of treatment, and proved such a success that a cheque for £15,000 has now been handed over, made up of sales of the book and other ventures, including talks to various organisations, including Hebden Bridge Rotary Club, a bike ride across Italy by colleagues James Holland and Neil Baison, bowling pal Shawn Frewin running the Kielder Forest half marathon, a fund-raising night at Walsden Cricket Club featuring his music pals The Circles, and donations from the crown green bowling community.
Professor Kevin Webb, consultant respiratory physician at Wythenshawe, said: “It is one of the largest donations we have ever received. The unit is one of the biggest in the country, and we are hugely dependant on the support of people like Keith and his friends.”
Keith is one of oldest survivors with a chronic form of the condition in the country. Hesaid: “Demand for the book was above any expectation I ever had. To have raised £15,000 is beyond my wildest dreams. I had one lady who rang me to say her grandson had CF. She bought and read the book, then sent me a lovely letter saying that she now thought the future for her grandson was so much brighter. That’s the only recognition I need.”
Fundraising thanks also go to Heywood and Hebden Bridge Rotary Clubs, Rochdale Just For Fun Line Dancing Club, Todmorden Information Centre and Co-op electrical shop, he said.