London Man Defies Odds and Bets He Can Live With His Mesothelioma Diagnosis
Jon Matthews is a betting man. Turns out, he’s also a lucky one. After lung surgery in June 2006, doctors told Matthews he had only a few months left to live. Instead of giving up, in early 2007 he took his odds to his bookie and asked to place a $300 bet that he would outlive his doctors’ predictions. Surprisingly, bookmakers William Hill accepted his request, noting Matthews was adamant that it would give him an additional incentive to battle his illness.
It turns out that his bet is paying off — literally. Matthews has already collected nearly $7,300 as of June 2008, could pocket an additional $14,500 this summer and stands to collect the final $29,000 in the summer of 2010.
Clearly not one to resign himself to the odds, Matthews says his survival is due to an Indian doctor of homeopathy. “All the mainstream doctors could prescribe for me was morphine, but this healer put me on a course of herbal medicines that have not only changed, but prolonged my life,” he says.
“In a way it’s a shame the bet is only valid for three years, because the way I feel right now I’m indestructible,” he says. “These wins are a huge incentive to stay alive.”
U.K. writer David Wilkes, in his article that appeared on MailOnline in April 2009, notes that Matthews plans to give some of his winnings to cancer charity Macmillan and “spend the rest enjoying himself and indulging his passion for white-knuckle rides at theme parks.”
“Just because I’m dying, it doesn’t mean I can’t have fun, Matthews said.
You can read more about Jon on his Web site and read Wilkes’ articles here.