Ex-England captain Ray Illingworth makes stand in assisted dying debate after wife's cancer death
Added 12-04-21 02:36:02am EST - “Legendary England and Yorkshire cricketer Ray Illingworth (pictured) was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer a year ago and intends to end his remarkable life.” - Dailymail.co.uk
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Ray Illingworth's grown-up daughter Diane desperately wants to be strong for her 89-year-old dad, but emotion is rarely far from the surface. The legendary England and Yorkshire cricketer, who was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer a year ago, is talking about how he intends to end his remarkable life — or what he calls 'this dying job'.
'If I was well enough and it was during the summer, I'd like to go and watch a bit of a cricket match up there,' he says, nodding towards the Farsley village ground near Leeds in West Yorkshire where he has played since he was a boy in short trousers.
'Then I'd come back here and go to sleep. I wouldn't want to go somewhere else [such as an assisted dying clinic in Switzerland] to have it done. If that was the only option I would, but we shouldn't have to do that. I'd like to be put to sleep in peace in my own home in Yorkshire.'
Ex-England captain Ray Illingworth (pictured) has made a typically brave stand in the assisted dying debate after watching his wife's cruel death from cancer - and being hit by the disease himself
For the best part of 30 years this home, a stone's throw from the school where he met his wife Shirley at the age of 14, was filled with the stuff of a blessedly happy family life. But earlier this year it was a place of despair as Ray's much-loved wife of 63 years suffered terribly in the last weeks of her life. She died 'riddled with cancer' in March after breast cancer had gone undiagnosed during the worst of the pandemic.
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