Portsmouth dad who died after four-and-a-half-year battle with prostate cancer wanted his story told to help others

A FATHER-OF-TWO, who fought prostate cancer for over four years, was still thinking of others right till the end.

Friday, 12th February 2021, 11:56 am
Updated Friday, 12th February 2021, 12:32 pm
(left) Peter Farrugia from Portsmouth with daughter Coco, and (right) eldest daughter Aimee-Rose Harrison with dad Peter

In his last few days Peter Farrugia organised donations and Christmas presents for residents of the nursing home he was living in as his body struggled with the effects of prostate cancer.

The 58-year-old from Portsmouth had plans to dress up as Santa and deliver the gifts to his neighbours but sadly died on December 12 after fighting the cancer for nearly four and a half years.

His eldest daughter Aimee-Rose Harrison, 36, described him as ‘a strong and loving presence’.

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Speaking from her home in Perth, Western Australia, she told The News: ‘He had been unwell for some time before. He had a lot of back pain but it had been attributed to him being in manual labour.

‘It turned out the cancer had spread to his spine and when he got his diagnosis that it was terminal and he had tumours across his body, it made a lot of sense.’

Peter, a former shipwright and also dad to Coco, nine, went in to a nursing home last year after having a heart attack, struggling with lymphoedema and suffering from part paralysis.

Aimee-Rose, who was able to visit in July last year after getting permission from the Australian government, added: ‘He was a strong and loving presence. He was all about perseverance and whenever a tough part happened he was always ready to keep going.

‘When he was in the nursing home his goal at that point was to be Santa for the residents and gifts had been organised to be delivered to the residents. He died just before Christmas but the gifts were still passed out to everyone. He always thought of others.

‘During his journey there were bits that went well along the way but there were parts that were less than ideal as he couldn’t get on a clinical trial and he didn’t have an early diagnosis.

‘We had a chat at Christmas and because his outcome was inevitable, he wanted his story told to encourage people to work with their doctors and to get a second opinion if need be so that there can be a better chance of an early diagnosis and potentially a very different outcome.’

For more information visit nhs.uk/conditions/prostate-cancer/

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