It’s the news no one ever wants to hear, a cancer diagnosis.
Local dad of three Dan Kitching was diagnosed with bowel cancer in August 2015, but despite the devastating news the Hull FC fan has been fighting the disease every step of the way – despite several setbacks.
Dan has gone through several types of chemotherapy as he continues to fight the aggressive disease. In May this year he received news that the NHS could no longer treat him after his latest bout of chemotherapy was unsuccessful.
Determined not to give in despite this blow his family quickly set up a “Go fund me” page in the hope of raising £55,000 to pay for private treatment.
Since the inception of the Dan Kitching fund the response of the people of Hull and far beyond has been staggering and to date over £25,000 has been raised. Dan is an avid Black and White supporter but the sporting community across the city and on both sides of the rugby divide have stepped up and done everything they can.
It’s been one heart-warming story after another which has filled us with great pride to say we are from Hull. The great people of this city look after their own and that has been evident in their fundraising efforts for Dan.
Paul Cooke donated his match worn Challenge Cup winning shirt from 2005 to auction for the fund. His great friend and TalkSPORT DJ Adrian Durham won the auction with a bid of £1200 that was then matched by Hull KR’s vice chairman Rob Crossland and Leigh Centurions chairman Derek Beaumont.
A fantastic gesture from all three bidders and Cooke himself, after all that must have been one of his most prized and treasured possessions.
Dan’s Hull FC heroes surprised him on his birthday when they visited him at his home and brought the Challenge Cup trophy with them.
The players have also been drumming up support for the campaign on Social Media which is fantastic to see. Danny Washbrook also nominated his £250 Man of the Match charity donation he won at Salford to the fund.
Lee Radford donated a signed plaque featuring the name of every Hull FC player ever which sold for over £400, whilst Scott Taylor auctioned off his 2016 Magic Weekend shirt.
It’s not just celebrities that have got involved though the general public have also rallied to the cause. Fundraising events have been set up across the city with the latest being a Race night at the Lord Nelson pub last Saturday.
Two of us here at FanaticHull attended the event and it was a fantastic night. The turnout was massive and a great laugh was had by all. The horse races were accompanied by an auction, a raffle and even a charity beard shave and over £3000 was raised on the night which was a brilliant achievement.
Another race night is being held at The Barham pub on Marfleet Lane this Friday at 7pm. After last week’s event set up by Hull FC fans it’s now the turn of Hull KR fans to help Danny despite their differing allegiances on the rugby pitch.
Hull KR players will also be in attendance which is great to hear and it’s set to be another top night for the cause. We encourage as many of you as possible to attend as possible. A bucket collection will also be held at the Hall Road vs North Ferriby United friendly on Thursday night organised by our friends at the View From the Allotment End fanzine.
Several items of sporting memorabilia have been donated to the cause to be auctioned. Bids have flown in for items ranging from signed photos of sporting legends like Phil Taylor to signed rugby balls, shirts and signed football boots. All of these items have been sold for hefty amounts which has helped boost the fund to the half way mark. The auctioning of signed memorabilia has also produced the most heart-warming story of this entire campaign.
Bailey Taylor is a 7-year-old Hull KR fan who loves going to watch the Robins with his Grandad. He is also Dan’s nephew and he has blown everyone away with his amazing gesture. Completely off his own back he got ten Hull KR players to sign his shirt at Sunday’s game against London Broncos. He then came home and announced he wanted to auction the shirt to raise money for his Uncle. The story is all over social media and quite rightly so. A truly magnificent gesture young man, all of us at FanaticHull salute you.
Details of how to bid on Bailey’s shirt can be found on social media and if you are interested in placing a bid you have until 8pm on Friday to do so.
The Dan Kitching 55K campaign has been met with an unbelievable response from the people of Hull and beyond and we hope Danny and his family reach their target as soon as possible.
If you would like to make a donation visit the Go Fund Me page at https://www.gofundme.com/dannys-cancer-treatment-fund and follow @DanKitching_55k on twitter for details of further fundraising events and auction items.