Six friends going the distance in memory of Shirley deacon - The Solihull Observer

Six friends going the distance in memory of Shirley deacon

Solihull Editorial 26th Aug, 2022   0

SIX FRIENDS are cycling coast to coast from Whitehaven to Newcastle upon Tyne, in a 140-mile bike ride in memory of Shirley man Ian Deaville.

Ian worked as a principal test engineer for ZF Friedrichshafen AG and was also a deacon at Shirley Baptist Church in Solihull.

In May 2021, he noticed a tingling sensation in his foot. Initially thinking this could be the sign of a stroke, he was referred for an MRI scan at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham which revealed the shocking discovery of a mass on his brain.

Ian was diagnosed with an inoperable glioblastoma (GBM) which carries a stark prognosis of just 12 to 18 months.

He underwent gruelling radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment. However, the cancer was too aggressive, even after the decision was taken to increase the dosage.

After losing mobility and his speech, Ian died at home on September 9, 2021, aged just 50, surrounded by his loving family, wife, Rachel, and two children, Naomi, aged 21 and Luke, 19. Now Ian’s brother Dave is to lead the three day coast to coast bike ride in his memory, accompanied by Ian’s son, Luke, Rob Bridgewater, John Braithwaite, Jonathan Hibbs and Tim Davies.

“Ian didn’t have a bucket list, but before he passed away, he had mentioned how he would have loved to cycle a cost to coast challenge,” said Dave.

£This was something that both me and his best friend, Rob, mentioned during his burial and funeral service.

“From that moment we knew what we needed to do to honour Ian.”

He added: “Since Ian’s diagnosis, I have noticed the desperate need to raise awareness of this disease.

“Ian would be proud that we are supporting scientific research into something that is still so unknown.”

Less than 12 per cent of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50 per cent across all cancers.

Mel Tiley from Brain Tumour Research, said: “We’re sorry to hear about Ian’s diagnosis and are thankful to Dave for sharing his story.

“Unfortunately, Ian’s story isn’t unique, however there is no cure for the disease, and treatment can often be gruelling.

“By taking on the coast to coast cycle, Dave, Luke, John, Jonathan, Tim and Rob are raising awareness and helping to find the fight to find a cure for this devastating disease.”

To donate to Brain Tumour Research via Dave’s coast to coast cycle visit

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