Hull grandad Colin Barber fulfilled his dying wish list with party to say one last goodbye
A MAN diagnosed with cancer less than four months after retiring fulfilled his wish list before he died.
Colin Barber, 64, retired as a medical equipment engineer on January 1 and was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in April.
In August, tests revealed the disease had spread to Colin's liver and there was nothing more doctors could do.
Colin decided he did not want any more treatment before he died, instead choosing to be at home with his family.
IS YOUR CAR KEY BENT ? REMOTE FOB NOT WORKING ? LOST CAR KEYS ?...View details
FOR ALL YOUR CAR KEY NEEDS CALL US NOW ON
SNAPPED KEYS, LOST KEYS, KEYS LOCKED IN VEHICLES,
WE ALSO REPAIR 90% OF ALL REMOTES AND KEYS, NO FIX NO CHARGE.
FREE REMOTE KEY FOB BATTERY ONE PER CUSTOMER
SAVE £3.00 WITH THIS FREE BATTERY
Contact: 01482 423414
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
He wanted to sing one last karaoke song, play a final game of golf and share his most treasured possessions with his daughter and grandchildren, including his long service medal.
Colin also wanted a party to say one last goodbye to his family and friends, choosing to sing Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison Blues, which saw him receive a standing ovation.
His wife, Margaret, 64, said: "It was a party nobody really wanted to go to. But everybody said what a fantastic night they had.
"The week before that, he went to Driffield to play golf and he managed to do the 18 holes.
"He retired early so we could do things while he was still fit enough to do them. But it never happened."
Colin started his career as a panel beater at garages in Hull before joining the ambulance service in 1983. He was initially responsible for repairing ambulance vehicles but moved into repairing ambulance equipment in 1999.
The first indication he was unwell came during a trip to London in March and he began to suffer jaundice.
Tests in April confirmed he had a lesion on his pancreas and his bile duct was blocked, which was soon confirmed as pancreatic cancer.
Colin, who was married to Margaret for 43 years, underwent a nine-hour operation to remove the cancer. He pulled through the surgery and underwent chemotherapy.
When further tests revealed the cancer had spread to his liver in August, Colin was told he could have chemotherapy every week for the rest of his life but doctors could not do any more.
Instead, he chose to spend his final weeks at home in north Hull with Margaret and his daughter, Andrea Brennan, 39, caring for him around the clock.
They, along with son-in-law Lee Brennan, 42, were by sports fan Colin's side when he passed away, soon after watching England take on Poland in a World Cup qualifying round on October 17.
Andrea, of Beverley, said: "As soon as the football finished last week, he took his last breath."
Margaret and Andrea said Colin was "as fit as a flea" and stopped smoking 14 years ago to allow him to spend as much time as possible with grandchildren, James, 14, and Katy, 12.
Margaret said: "After the funeral service, it's a party to celebrate his life because that's what he would have wanted."
Margaret said Colin was a devoted grandfather and they enjoyed family holidays to Cornwall every year.
Colin enjoyed running up the sand dunes in Holywell Bay, alongside James and Katy, and his ashes will be scattered there.
He also helped to organise his own funeral, sharing his wishes with his family and choosing his own songs.
Andrea said: "He was fantastic. He was a prankster, never fed up and always happy. He loved life and never had a cross word with anybody. You couldn't have got a better person."