Belfast Telegraph

Brian Kennedy's joy as his cancer fight has helped save the lives of other men

By Nick Bramhill

Singer Brian Kennedy has told of his delight on learning that his own recent cancer diagnosis has proved a boon to other sufferers - and even helped save a number of lives.

The 50-year-old singer-songwriter said he was "in great health and doing as well as can be expected" following his diagnosis with rectal cancer last summer.

But the Belfast-born musician, who has since undergone radiation and chemotherapy treatment, said the one positive to emerge from his health setback has been the inspiration he's provided to other male cancer sufferers.

"Everywhere I go now people come up to me and tell me their really private cancer stories, that they're either in the middle of, or they've been through, or they've lost a person, maybe," he said.

"This guy wrote me a letter quite recently and the title of the letter was 'You've Saved My Life'.

"He'd been putting it on the long finger for ages, but finally he went to the doctor's after he read about me.

"He got checked and they found a tumour and they operated.

"He's a married fella with a bunch of kids and he's now going to live to see another many years, hopefully.

"So for me, even if that happened once, I'm delighted.

"But it's happened a bunch a times."

Kennedy also said his perspective on life had changed since both his own diagnosis and the loss of his older musician brother Bap to pancreatic cancer last November.

"As I always say, there's someone worse off than me somewhere in the world right now. So that makes me feel like I've still got work to do, money to raise," he said.

"It's really important to me to get out there and try to help other people.

"Once the dust settled in my own life, I just thought I have to use what little platform I have, especially to speak to fellas.

"The minute you say anything about having an 'investigation' below the belt, most fellas will run to the hills."

In an interview on TV3's The Six O'Clock Show, Kennedy also told how he was enjoying his music and performing live more than ever.

And speaking of his own battle with cancer, he added: "I'm in great health and doing as well as can be expected. I'm not out of the woods yet, by any means. It's a slow process.

"I've been through all the treatment, all of that stuff. So we're kind of just biding our time and seeing how things pan out over the next few months, then I have some more decisions to make."

Brian had previously spoken about how he was comforted by the fact he went to see Bap just before he died, ending a long period of estrangement between the pair.

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