Businessman Bobby Kerr announces cancer diagnosis

Broadcaster is receiving treatment for cancer of the neck and head

Businessman Bobby Kerr has started receiving treatment for cancer of the head and neck, and is temporarily stepping aside as host of his Newstalk radio show. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

Businessman Bobby Kerr has started receiving treatment for cancer of the head and neck, and is temporarily stepping aside as host of his Newstalk radio show. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

 

Businessman Bobby Kerr has revealed live on his own radio show that he has been diagnosed with cancer.

The self-made millionaire and owner of the Insomnia chain of coffee shops told listeners of his Down to Business show on Newstalk that he has started receiving treatment for cancer of the head and neck, and is temporarily stepping aside as host to “make myself better”.

“Did you know 35,000 people hear the dreaded words every year ‘we have the results of your biopsy, you need to come in and see me’. Well folks, it’s 34,999 and one other- me,” he said, “because guess what, I’ve been diagnosed with cancer of the head and neck, and I’m currently receiving treatment to make myself better.

“I have a very serious disease, it’s been caught early, it’s only in one place, and because it’s been caught early my chances of beating this increase incrementally,” added the 55 year-old, who has been presenting the Saturday morning magazine show for six years.

Mr Kerr, who was previously an investor on RTÉ’s Dragon’s Den series, said he wanted to broach the issue in such a public manner to raise awareness of Movember and Men’s Health Month in the hope that more people will get themselves checked out.

“So, why am I telling you this, what you might consider a very personal and private piece of news? The reason’s simple- it’s Movember, it’s Men’s Health Month. Get yourself checked out, I did.

“I’ve always considered myself a glass half-full type of person, always tried to take a positive attitude of whatever life throws at me, and I believe that life is absolutely for living,” he said.

He went on to mention the “arsenal of armoury” he has to beat the illness including support from his mother, brother, extended family and business colleagues alongside his wife Mary and their four daughters Meghan, Emily, Rebecca and Michaela.

He also paid tribute to co-workers and station management at Newstalk, as well as fellow presenters Jonathan Healy and Vincent Wall who will take over hosting duties for Down to Business until Mr Kerr’s expected return in the new year.

“God bless you all and thanks, and I’ll see you next year,” he concluded.