In September 1987 Nic Outterside, who was then aged 31 and living in Kinnersley, Herefordshire, was diagnosed with a fast-spreading malignant cancer of the right shoulder.
Eight months later – following two operations to remove shoulder muscle and most of his right lung, plus radiotherapy – he was told there was nothing more doctors could do, and he was told he had a one in 10 chance of living more than five years.
But in 1998, 11 years on, he was told he was officially cured.
“The whole experience was rollercoaster and I met many people who I will never forget,” says Outterside.
“Recently my GP, said: ‘Your story is what many would describe as a medical miracle, and proves that there is always hope’.
“But I also lost friends along the way, including my soul-mate Andrea, who was younger than me and succumbed to an incurable bone cancer in 1990, aged just 23.
“I still grieve for her, and this book is dedicated to the most life-affirming person I have ever known.”
Mr Outterside, now aged 67 and enjoying retirement in Wolverhampton, has now released a book about his experiences, entitled Soul Survivor.
“I owe my life to the doctors and nurses in south Wales and my family who have stood by me along the way,” he said. “My story is for them and many others who have had their own brush with cancer.”