TV star Thom Hunt tells of cancer experience
LIFE-THREATENING cancer was "the best thing that ever happened" to a Truro-based television celebrity.
Thom Hunt was just 27 when he was diagnosed with cancer of the colon that required emergency surgery and intensive chemotherapy.
Thom, now 31, has enjoyed huge success with the Channel 4 series Three Hungry Boys, a spin-off book and 7th Rise, the company he set up to offer fishing, foraging, hunting and wild food cookery on the banks of the River Fal. He said he would never have achieved as much as he has without the experience of cancer.
He said: "It was the best thing that ever happened to me. Most people say, 'Why me, I'm 27 years old?' and concentrate on the negative.
Buy one get one free on main course and specials excludes fillet steaks and beef Wellington
Must book to qualify 01209 860332 and present voucher on arrival
Mon- Thur 6-9pm
Contact: 01209 700617
Valid until: Saturday, December 21 2013
"You go through a lot of pain and uncertainty and change. But it was worth it tenfold to be the person I am now.
"I don't give in to fear, I have my own company and a television career. It was a great experience to go through."
Thom was in no doubt about the danger he faced when he became ill.
He said: "I was diagnosed with colon cancer that had spread to my lymph nodes. Once it spreads your chances become a lot slimmer – my prognosis was not ideal."
But following the surgery and treatment, Thom made a good recovery after about a year and now takes part in triathlons – most recently in a team with former England cricketer Mark Ramprakash in the Virgin Active London Triathlon to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support.
The Three Hungry Boys programme, backed by River Cottage founder Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, involves the trio of former Plymouth University students fishing, foraging and hunting their way around the UK.
Thom said: "I don't forget what happened. I just focus on what it brought me in terms of connection to others and finding your life purpose.
"I see my lot as so amazing and I have the cancer experience to thank for it. I really upped the ante and I went on to do the second television series, wrote a book, started a company and increased my contribution to society."
As soon as Thom recovered he decided he wanted to give something back and organised a cricket match which raised £20,000.
He said: "As I've benefited directly from the wonderful work that Macmillan does I'm so pleased to be able to raise vital funds to help ensure that no one has to face cancer alone."