Saturday 24 February 2018 marked 25 years since Bobby Moore sadly died of bowel cancer.
The West Ham United and England defender, who captained the Hammers and England for more than a decade, passed away in 1993.
That same year, Bobby’s widow, Stephanie Moore MBE, set up the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK. The charity has funded world-class bowel cancer research and awareness projects and aims to reach £25m this year to help beat bowel cancer, marking the 25th anniversary of her late husband’s death.
Since the Fund was started, mortality rates for bowel cancer have fallen by more than 30%, but there is still so much more to do. Around 41,700 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer in the UK every year but, if diagnosed at the earliest stage possible, more than nine out of ten people will survive their disease for five years or more.
My hope is that by continuing to increase awareness and funding, many more lives can be saved from this terrible disease in the future
Stephanie Moore MBE
Stephanie remembers when Bobby was told he had cancer: “If it had been discovered early and he’d received surgery straight away, he may well have lived. He survived for 20 months after diagnosis.”
“Finding a way to beat bowel cancer, and raising awareness of the disease, has been my goal for the past 25 years. I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved so far and it’s thanks to all our many generous supporters that survival is improving and has doubled in the last 40 years.
“My hope is that by continuing to increase awareness and funding, many more lives can be saved from this terrible disease in the future.”
Bobby’s legacy lives on through the Fund named in his memory, inspiring people from all walks of life, including those who followed him into the England squad.
Former Three Lions goalkeeper David Seaman MBE is just one of dozens of players and celebrities to throw their support behind the Fund.
He said: “Bobby was a true hero who died too soon. The Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK has done so much work in the past 25 years to help beat bowel cancer sooner.
“You can find out how to help spot bowel cancer early by visiting the Bobby Moore Fund website. You can also raise vital funds by taking part in Football Shirt Friday, a campaign close to my heart.”
Football Shirt Friday, which asks people to wear their football shirt and donate £5 to the Bobby Moore Fund, is back for its sixth year on Friday 27 April.
The fundraising initiative draws inspiration from one of the most famous images of Bobby taken at the 1970 World Cup, where he swapped football shirts with Brazilian legend Pelé. Shown as a sign of respect between the opposing players, it is a gesture that has been recreated by footballers worldwide ever since.
As part of Bobby’s legacy, the Bobby Moore Fund has been one of West Ham United’s charity partners for many years. For more information on the Bobby Moore Fund and Football Shirt Friday, click here.