A dying dad was given an early Christmas party as part of a bucket list organised by his devoted daughter.
Bob Evans, 63, was told he had just six months to live after he was diagnosed with throat cancer in July this year.
He was offered radiotherapy and chemotherapy, which had a ten per cent chance of success, but refused in order to spend “quality time” with his family and friends.
His only daughter Lisa, 37, decided to draw up a bucket list of things for her and her dad to do together in the time they had left.
Since his diagnosis Bob, a retired Royal Navy medic from Birmingham, and Lisa, have climbed Mount Snowdon, seen the military tattoo in Edinburgh, and had a flight in a fighter jet.
Lisa, who works for National Express, said: “When dad was given his diagnosis we were shocked but we were both determined to get on with things and make his time left memorable.
“I started building up a bucket list of things for us to do together like walk up Snowdon, go in a fighter jet and revisit Portsmouth naval docks to reminisce about his military career.”
Another bucket list item was for Bob to have a surprise party and on Friday (11/11) 50 of his friends and family shocked him when they threw him an early Christmas knees-up.
Lisa, from Birmingham, added: “All Bob’s friends have been so amazing and given him so much support I wanted to thank them all as well as give my dad a surprise party.
“He had no idea what was going to happen.
“I told him we were going to go out for a quiet family meal but when we walked into the venue everyone cheered and we had a huge Christmas party.
“Dad is going downhill but whatever happens between now and Christmas, I know that he had a wonderful Christmas surrounded by his friends and family.”
Bob’s pals even managed to hire two belly dancers to perform for him which was another cheeky addition to his bucket list.
The day after his surprise bash, Bob wrote on Facebook: “I am still floating somewhere and can’t believe what’s happened.
“I am so lucky to have such great friends and I’m really pleased to have seen you enjoying yourselves!
“I cannot thank everyone enough. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to. But top of the list has to be that amazing woman.
“The one with the endless energy and that refuses to accept the word ‘No’.
“My fantastic daughter Lisa. I am gobsmacked!
“I love her to bits! Thanks pipsqueak.”
Bob, whose wife Cathy died of a brain aneurysm six years ago aged 56, was diagnosed with cancer after going to the GP following a persistent cough and cold.
Lisa said: “He’d recently taken up walking and after coming back from a trip to Snowdon he had an awful cold which wouldn’t shift.
“He went to the GP and had tests and it quickly became apparent he had cancer. He was offered highly invasive surgery which he declined, or chemotherapy and radiotherapy which would only improve his chances by ten per cent.
“Dad said he wanted to make the most of his life as it was rather than go through all that for just a ten per cent chance.
“For us it’s about quality time rather than quantity of time. The last few months have been amazing and even when dad isn’t around I’ll know that we had some wonderful times together.”