A man, who was told by his doctors that he would die by Christmas 2007, placed a bet with English bookmakers William Hill to prove his doctors wrong. The 58 year old widower Jon Matthews has been living on borrowed time ever since he was diagnosed with an untreatable asbestos-linked cancer two years ago.
The man walked into the Fenny Stratford’s branch of the bookie in September 2007 and told its staff that he wanted to place a £100 bet against the doctors’ prediction that he would be dead by Christmas. He said, “I want to have a bit of fun. Placing the bet would be incentive to fight this horrible illness.” He added, “The staff at William Hill checked the facts and gave me the odds of 50-1.”
The 58 year old is suffering from mesothelioma, which can lie dormant for decades but, once it develops, can kill within months. Jon thinks that he inhaled asbestos in the science labs during his schooldays. He was diagnosed with the disease in April 2006.
He plans to spend the winning on liquor, smokes and death-defying theme park rides. He said, “Why should I not enjoy the rest of my life.”
The man looks after his elderly parents who live with him at their Woburn Sands home. He will be giving half the winning amount to Macmillian cancer care charity and Hula animal sanctuary.
William Hill Spokesperson Graham Sharpe said, “It is the first time that we have had a person betting on his life. We have never been so happy when we have paid a winning sum.”