Doug’s charity walk at age of 91

Douglas and John Longstaff
Douglas and John Longstaff

AT the age of 91, Normandy veteran Doug Longstaff is preparing to walk 5km on Sunday in aid of Weston Park Hospital.

He will be lining up for the annual Walk as One at Don Valley Stadium on Sunday in memory of five members of his extended family who were lost to cancer.

Doug’s wife, Kathleen, died of kidney cancer three-and-a-half years ago at the age of 83, just a few months before the couple were due to celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary.

His three sisters-in-law, who were taken in by him and his wife as children following the death of their mother from cancer, also died of the disease.

Doug, a father of three, will step out with his son, John, and it is the 15th consecutive year the family has show its support for Weston Park Hospital Cancer Charity, raising £9,000.

Doug said: “It’s an amazing hospital and it’s great to be able to play my part in supporting charity.”

John, aged 62, who lives in Mosborough, said his dad “has always been an incredibly selfless man. I think that stems from the camaraderie he experienced during his time in the army, which shaped his attitude of helping others and this has stayed with him throughout his life.

“He’s still very sociable and walks to the shops near his home nearly every day – at the moment he’s in training for the event! He’s always telling people about Weston Park Hospital Cancer Charity and trying to encourage others to show their support.”

The walk will see cancer survivors, people who have lost loved ones or had experience of cancer in their lives, supporters of the charity, and the general public join together in the fight against the disease and to raise funds for one of the region’s leading cancer charities.

Last year’s event saw more than 500 people take part and raise £30,000.