Tribute walk of boy for his "pampy"
WHEN little Kieran Watts lost his grandfather to cancer he vowed to do something in memory of his "best buddy".
Stewart Veale died in April, aged 63, one month after being told he had the disease.
Kieran, from St Paul's, might only be nine but has come up with an idea which belies his tender years. This Sunday he will be walking from Gloucester to Cheltenham to raise awareness of how quickly cancer can take a hold.
His dad Neil Watts, 35, said: "Kieran was very close to his grampie and it was his idea to do the walk.
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"His grampie used to pick him up every week and they would play together. They were best buddies.
"Kieran found it very hard when he died so this is probably his way of giving something back to his grampie and to try to help others out. We are very proud of him. He came to the funeral, wrote a special prayer for his grampie, got up at the front of the church and said it in front of everyone."
Kieran will undertake the eight-mile walk, with his father at his side. Wearing a T-shirt with a picture of his grandfather, whom he called Pampy, he will make his way from The Cross in Gloucester to the Promenade in Cheltenham, along Old Gloucester Road.
He is also being sponsored for his efforts, with donations going to Cancer Research UK.
Neil, a butcher, said: "Stewart was a very fit man and was never really ill.
"He just got ill and very tired and had back ache and went to see the doctor. He was diagnosed on March 3 with prostate cancer. It spread like wildfire. This is why we are doing it, to raise awareness of how fast it can happen, with any cancer. Every single member of his family and friends miss him so much."
Kieran said: "I wanted to do it in memory of my Pampy. My favourite thing was when he picked me up from school."
Mr Veale, who lived in Fiddler's Green, celebrated his 34th wedding anniversary with his wife Doreen while he was on the Lillybrook Ward at Cheltenham General Hospital.
They worked at the University of Gloucestershire, where Doreen was a cleaner and Stewart her boss. He leaves behind his daughters Emma and Rebecca and four grandchildren.
Kieran's target was £200, but he has already beaten that. To sponsor his walk go to www.justgiving.com/KieranWatts0803.