Sir Bobby died 10 years ago today. We all miss him.
In 2009, a year after launching his Foundation, he said: “I said I’d give it a year but I’m still going, still fighting. It’s not always easy but through this charity I’ve met some wonderful people, some very faithful people, and as long as the commitment and belief is there, I’ll continue to help for as long as I can.
“With us all pulling together we can do something very special here fighting cancer in the North East of England for the benefit of everyone who will be affected by this terrible disease wherever they live.”
He has left us an extraordinary legacy and we’re very grateful.
Commenting on this 10th anniversary of losing her husband, Lady Elsie said: “We’ve all missed him a great deal and still do. All the family, and his friends of course.
Professor Ruth Plummer and Lady Elsie in the Sir Bobby Centre earlier this year
“I’ve found the Foundation very helpful in that respect. It was something Bob was very passionate about and it’s given us all a focus. For myself especially, because I really do enjoy all the events and the people I meet through the charity.
“Many people are in a similar position to me because of cancer and it’s good to feel part of something so special. I know Bob felt that, too. After he launched the charity, he truly felt like he was a manager again and that he had a job to do.
“We were married for 54 years and did a lot together. It was sometimes challenging, and we moved house 27 times as football took him around Europe, but it was always interesting.
“And he was very supportive of me and my career, too. It was natural to him that I should want to work and I was a nurse, then a teacher and a small business owner, as well as bringing up the boys. Then I suppose we both reached an age when you’re supposed to relax but that wasn’t really in his nature. Even though he was ill, he was determined to set up this charity and he was extremely proud of it.
“It’s amazed me how much we’ve been able to do through the Foundation. The support just hasn’t let up and our medical trustees keep us moving forwards and make sure we’re making the right decisions.
“I’m so grateful to everyone who has continued to fundraise for us and to help find better ways to detect and treat cancer. Bob would be absolutely amazed at everything we’ve done. And he’d want us to keep at it.
“What stands out most to me after 10 years is that the love and respect people have for Bob doesn’t seem to have diminished at all.”