Dad who thought he had a hangover diagnosed with brain tumor ‘size of a satsuma’


Richard Walker, from Kidderminster, said that he first suffered pain at the back of his head in September, 2021, that felt like a hangover, before he was diagnosed with a brain tumor

Richard Walker, from Kidderminster, found out he had incurable cancer on his birthday and anniversary
Richard Walker, from Kidderminster, found out he had incurable cancer on his birthday and anniversary

A dad has told how he learned he had an incurable brain tumor “the size of a satsuma” after waking up feeling like he was hungover.

Richard Walker, from Kidderminster, says he was left “sad, angry and frustrated” after getting the shock diagnosis which is devastating for his wife and two children aged eight and 16, reported Birmingham Live.

The businessman has now begun fundraising, after finishing grieving radiotherapy treatment, to help find a cure for other sufferers.

He is also chronicling his “cancer journey” on Instagram in a bid to raise awareness of brain tumors – which kill more children and adults under 40 than any other kind of cancer.

Richard will begin his fundraising for Brain Tumor Research this Friday when he will tour four Lloyds Bank branches in Worcester, Kidderminster, Droitwich and Cleobury Mortimer. It is part of a campaign organized by his sister-in-law who works for the bank.

The tumor is the size of a satsuma


He was diagnosed with a Stage 4 glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) tumor on New Year’s Eve – the same day he turned 51 and celebrated his ninth wedding anniversary with wife, Lucy, aged 44.

His symptoms began in September, 2021, when he began experiencing severe pain at the back of his head which would last for days and gradually became more debilitating.

Richard, managing director of Weldmax UK in Stourport-on-Severn, said: “I woke up feeling like I had been ‘on the pop’- which I hadn’t. I could see red and green lights in the corner of my right eye and remember a friend telling me about something similar they experienced whilst they were having a stroke and I thought that was happening to me.”

His symptoms worsened and after losing his peripheral vision he was forced to pull over his van and seek help from strangers, who called Lucy to come and pick him up.

She took him to A&E at Alexandra Hospital in Redditch where his cancer was diagnosed.

A further three CT scans and two MRIs were carried out to assess the tumor and he was transferred to the neurological unit at University Hospital Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW). Results revealed the tumor was the size of a satsuma and attached “like a millipede” to his optic nerve, deeming it inoperable due to risk of further damage.

He underwent a six week course of radiotherapy which finishes this month. On March 25 he will undertake a day of fundraising as part of Wear A Hat Day with the aim of collecting £2,740, which represents the cost of a day of research at one of the charity’s Center of Excellence.

Richard said the diagnosis was devastating for his family.

“Together Lucy and I have told the kids over time,” he said. “Max is eight and his school has been very supportive.

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“We bought him a book which is called ‘someone I love has cancer’ and that’s been a great tool to help him understand what’s happening to me. Evie is 16 and wants to be a doctor and has a nurturing personality and just wants to help I.

“I’ve felt, sad, angry and frustrated, especially as I can no longer drive. Reading the statistics about brain tumors is the fuel to my fight.

“I feel so lucky when I wake up in the morning. I decided to document my brain tumor journey on Instagram as a way of offloading my thoughts and as a place for people to see for themselves. Lots of people ask how I am and this was an easy way of answering.”

Wear A Hat Day is now in its 13th year and has so far raised more than £2 million for Brain Tumor Research to fight the disease. To donate to Richard’s JustGiving fund-raising appeal, click here.

Follow his journey on Instagram here.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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