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William's work

1 July 2014

Kilgannon family continuing to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK

Lions fans will be familiar with the story of Brian Kilgannon, a lifelong Millwall supporter suffering with advanced prostate cancer. When the club's partnership with Prostate Cancer UK was announced last summer, Brian was inspired to come forward and share his story, aiming to raise awareness of the symptoms of the disease and encourage men to get the necessary checks from their doctors.

His son, William, aged just 11, has supported Prostate Cancer UK in a number of ways since Brian began volunteering with the charity. Most recently, the pair appeared on BBC 1's Lifeline appeal on Father's Day, and William has kindly provided with an account of that and his other fundraising efforts.

"My name is William Kilgannon. I am 11 years old and I am a volunteer for Prostate Cancer UK.

10,000 men die of prostate cancer every year, and I want to tell as many people as possible about the charity and the disease so other men and their families do not have to go through what my family have been through.

I have been busy fundraising, collecting 10,000 pennies, making cakes for cake sales, writing a letter to London Mayor Boris Johnson reminding him to get a PSA check and proudly wearing the 'man of men' pin badge wherever I go, selling them to everyone I meet.

It's been a really exciting week and I made my TV debut in a nine-minute video called Lifeline which aired on BBC 1 on Father's Day (Sunday 15th June) at 5.15pm and Wednesday 18th June on BBC 2 at 10.20am.

When I was first told about the Lifeline appeal for Prostate Cancer UK I was very excited and spoke to a nice lady from the BBC who asked me some questions. Some of the questions were quite challenging so I had to give them plenty of thought.

Filming took place at my nan and grandad's home at the end of May. We were doing it there because it was going to be on TV on Father's Day and there would be three generations of my family - me, my dad and my dad's dad - present. I wasn't nervous about being filmed, in fact I think my dad was more worried than me.

When the three people from the BBC arrived they chatted to me and then started filming. The big camera filmed me and my dad playing chess. I wanted them to film me beating my dad so I could remind him later on. Throughout the day the film crew went from room to room, filming us both. At times it was quite confusing and there was a lot of waiting around, but mum and nanny made lunch for everyone and we all managed to get a break and tucked into rolls and cakes.

The best part of the filming was when we went outside and I was doing kick-ups while my dad and grandad were watching. I enjoyed doing the kick-ups, but I suppose one or two is not that good! We had to be quick, though, because the weather was bad and we all thought it was going to rain.

When I was being filmed they told me that they wanted to ask me a few questions but it seemed like a hundred to me. My mum and dad were not there so I was able to say what I wanted about the disease, the charity, Millwall FC and my dad. I even managed to make a joke about my favourite football team.

At the end of a long day we were all tired. I was surprised it had taken so long as I had been told that it would be nine minutes long. But I wanted to do it to help my dad raise awareness, and because I want a cure found.

Afterwards, when everyone asked me what I had said, I told them I couldn't remember, and that they would have to wait and see and watch it on television.

I enjoyed this challenge and look forward to the next one, whatever that may be."

To view the film and donate to Prostate Cancer UK through the BBC Lifeline appeal, click here

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