Belfast Telegraph

Jackie Hutton: A beloved figure in the Irish League

Case study

Jackie Hutton
Jackie Hutton

Jackie Hutton is a name that will evoke memories for fans of many Irish League clubs.

Born in Glasgow, he moved to Belfast after meeting wife Elaine and won trophies as a player and manager throughout the 1970s with Glentoran, Portadown and Cliftonville.

All those successes made him a popular figure and his death in 2015 touched the fans of each club that he had been involved with.

Jackie had no idea he was suffering from prostate cancer. In fact, such was his state of health that in 2011, at the age of 67, he undertook a trek of Mount Kilimanjaro to raise funds for Help for Heroes and his local church in Belfast.

The severe back, groin and hip pain that he experienced after returning home was put down to the strain of that climb.

Sadly, that wasn't what was causing him the discomfort, and after having previous PSA tests had come back negative, it was discovered that Jackie had been one of a small number of unfortunate men who experience false negatives and a further test revealed advanced prostate cancer.

Over the next four years, Jackie put all thoughts of side-effects or risk out of his mind and volunteered to take part in a number of clinical trials undertaken by the research team at the Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology at Queen's University Belfast.

Even a few months before his death, Jackie's lifestyle baffled the specialists as although the cancer was advancing, his activity levels remained high as he walked most days, in contrast to the scan results showing that any treatment was no longer having an effect, leading to his death in May 2015.

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