Richard Herring: I feared I'd die before my kids knew who I was | Comedian speaks about his cancer diagnosis

Richard Herring: I feared I'd die before my kids knew who I was

Comedian speaks about his cancer diagnosis

comedyRichard Herring has spoken of how he thought he’d die before his children got to know him when he was diagnosed with testicular cancer.

The comedian has previously talked about the moment in his book Can I Have My Ball Back? – which is also the title of his new tour on the topic.

Appearing on Chris Moyles’ Radio X show this morning, Herring recalled getting a phone call from his doctor with bad news.

He said: ‘My son was two at the time, my daughter was five. I’d just been playing with the family and my son was just laughing in the next room, so there was this real moment of "Oh my God," you know? My kids aren’t going to know who I was.

‘So that bit [in the show] is quite emotional.… I really cried thinking about my kids and then myself, and not being here any more.

‘But you know, there was so much kind of clarity within that [90 second phone call] I realise just how many different things went through my head.

‘You know in a comedy film when they have the five stages of grief? They go through them, and the other person goes… Gets angry, then happy, accepts it. But it was really like that, kind of. Sort of bargaining. Going, "well, maybe it’s best if I die straight away so they don’t know who I am?’" 

‘Then I was thinking, "no, I’ve got to work out how I can earn enough money to look after my family, what passwords to pass onto my wife – and which ones she must never find."

‘And you know, you’re thinking about how she’s going to bring up two kids on her own – to begin with. Of course, she’s very attractive, she’ll find someone.

‘I was thinking about the guy – her next husband – drinking all of my whisky!’

And he admitted he still worried about losing his whisky, despite having stopped drinking three years ago.

Herring is he second comedian to appear on the Chris Moyles Show in as many days. Yesterday, Bill Bailey recalled one Edinburgh Fringe show that he and Sean Lock performed to an audience of one… fellow comedian Dominic Holland.

» Richard ​Herring tour dates

•  The Chris Moyles Show is on Radio X weekdays from 6:30am to 10am and on Global Player.


Published: 28 Feb 2024

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