Friends united to raise cash for cancer fund in memory of Wrexham man

Reporter:

Claire Gallagher

MORE than £32,000 has been raised in memory of a popular public relations worker who died in 2008.

The community of Gresford was left in shock at the death of Jon Ratcliffe, 28, in June 2008.

Since his death, £32,000 has been raised in Jon’s memory – most of which has been raised for Cancer Research, and in particular, the Bobby Moore Bowel Cancer Fund.

Jon, who at one time worked for Cheshire Constabulary at Winsford, was the North Western area media and marketing manager for the British Transport Police and died after a battle with bowel cancer.

His father Rob, headteacher of Ysgol Bryn Alyn in Gwersyllt, said: “My wife and I are overwhelmed by the ongoing support and fundraising activities that continue in memory of our dear son Jon.

“Friends and family have arranged concerts and undertaken difficult challenges including the London Marathon, cycling from Holyhead to Cardiff and many more activities.

“Our aim is to make sure Jon’s memory lives on, and that our contribution to charity will hopefully help others and prevent other families having to endure the very painful grief that we will always suffer.”

Nine of Jon’s friends are also set to take on the Three Peaks Challenge climbing the three highest peaks in Britain – Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon – in just 24 hours.

The friends are hoping to raise an ambitious £10,000 to be split between the Bobby Moore Bowel Cancer Fund and Alder Hey Ronald McDonald House.

Taking on the challenge on June 3 will be Jon’s friends Wyn Jones, Kevin Todd, Russ Pritchard, Craig Williams, Matt Nicholas, Hugh Jones, Ant McAllister, Phil Jones and Chris Newman.

The climbers will be assisted by Jon’s father, Russ Pritchard and Steve Rowland who will all play a major role in driving the mini buses to Scotland and between the destinations.

In total the group will be walking a gruelling 26 miles and reaching heights of 11,000ft.

They are aiming to complete Ben Nevis in Scotland in five hours, Scafell Pike in England in four hours and Snowdon in Wales in four hours.

Mr Ratcliffe said: “The Three Peaks event is a major challenge, but one which Jon’s close friends are determined to achieve.”

Dad Rob said: “We are exceptionally proud of everything he achieved. He was a great son and a great brother.”

Jon was living in Salford Quays, Manchester, with his girlfriend Louise. His mum, Gill, said they were looking forward to getting married.

See full story in the Leader

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