This is like the worst, best news ever!
A comedian spent his ENTIRE life savings after doctors told him he only had three months to live. Well it turns out they were actually wrong about his diagnosis and he’s living after all.
Read the full story below…
A comedian was told he had three months to live by doctors and promptly set about completing his ‘bucket list’ – only to be told eight weeks later that he was far from kicking the bucket. When Dave Ismay was told booze had left him with deadly liver cirrhosis and that he had just months to live, he was baffled, having never been a particularly heavy drinker. But faced with the devastating diagnosis, the former TV comic – who performed for 20 years with his best friend legendary funnyman Bob Monkhouse – decided there was still much he had left to do. He immediately started a ‘bucket list’ – a list of things to do before he kicked the bucket – only to find that 10 weeks later doctors had got his diagnosis very wrong.
Dave did not have cirrhosis of the liver caused by alcohol, but in fact was suffering from a treatable hereditary condition called haemochromatosis; an overload of iron in his blood. Dave, 64, from Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leiceistershire, said: ‘To be told you only have three months left to live really focuses your mind and brings everything into perspective. All the things that you said you were going to do but never did suddenly seem really important. ‘When I got back from the doctors the first thing I did was sit down and write my bucket list – the list of things I wanted to do while I was still around.’
The concept of a bucket list was popularised by the film of the same name starring Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson about two friends who decide to fufill their life ambitions before they die. The list included simple ambitions like taking his three-year-old grandson to Villa Park and also playing golf at The K Club, in Ireland. But the list also included more outlandish aspirations such as appearing in panto and owning a brand new Mercedes.
Without knowing if he would still be around on the opening night, Dave auditioned to be the pantomine dame in a local production and even splashed £26,000 (about $42,000 USD) on a shiny new motor. Dave said: ‘I know it’s a lot of money, but I figured if I’m going to go I wanted to go comfortably.’ He also completed a book about his life on the road with one of Britian’s best-loved comics, called Bob Monkhouse Unpublished. As the last thing on the list, Dave scrawled, ‘immortality’ knowing it would be the one thing he would never acheive.
Formerly Villa Park’s matchday announcer, Dave received the shock diagnosis after privately paying £150 ($240) for a full body scan and health test. The test showed he was suffering from a non-life threatening aneurysm and subsequent investigations unveiled the abnormalities in his blood and liver function. It was then he was told that he had pickled his liver with a lifetime of drinking and that he had just months left to live.
Dave, who first found fame with Monkhouse on 70s TV show The Golden Shot, said: ‘I was baffled because I hadn’t been drinking anything like the amount need for such damage to my liver. I’d stopped my 60-a-day smoking habit at the age of 40 after being hypnotised in Florida and I felt in generally good health.’
However, after spending his savings, finishing his book and agreeing to appear as Mother Goose in the panto at Reddtich Palace Theatre, Dave was to receive another shock. Ten weeks after his initial earth-shattering diagnosis, liver biopsy results revealed he was suffering from hereditary haemochromatosis – a treatable condition which leaves too much iron in the blood. The condition can lead to permanent liver damage and other health issues, but if caught early enough this damage is reversible. The treatment involves draining the body of blood until the condition stabilises.
Dave, who lives with his 65-year-old make-up artist wife Dobie, said: ‘When I was told this by the specialist I was seeing in Solihull, he told me I could celebrate. But I said since he wasn’t going to be invited to my funeral, he wouldn’t be coming to my party either. I’ve since changed to a completely different specialist and go every week to Burton, where I have a litre of blood taken out by the brilliant nurses there. So far I had had about 50 litres drained off and my iron levels have dropped from more than 4,000 to 2,000. The normal level is about 100, but I am well on my way.’
However, the new lease of life Dave had been granted did not mean he was giving up on his list and he still plans to complete the rest, including a trip to Australia with his wife, Dobie. Dave said: ‘Now I don’t drink at all and I don’t eat any red meat – just chicken and fish, which I’m getting a bit sick of. Soon I should only need to have blood removed once every six months and I’m really looking forward to a nice glass of dry, white, wine when that happens. I might have written ‘immortality’ on the list thinking I would never achieve it, but it turns out I wasn’t as far off as I imagined.’
Wow… Guess it’s a good thing that he didn’t die, right? We don’t know if the guy should be pissed as hell or the “happiest man alive.” (LOL)