WHEN police constable Scott Reid noticed a suspicious mole on his skin just weeks after a sunshine holiday, he knew it had to be checked.
After all he had seen wife Rosie battle breast cancer. And his step-daughter Emma Sutherland’s book about coping with Rosie’s illness – Eek! My Mummy has Breast Cancer – has become essential reading for children facing the trauma of parental cancer.
Within weeks the Bilston Glen-based officer had had his fears confirmed. The mole, he learned, was in fact skin cancer.
The diagnosis left the family reeling from the shock of having been hit by cancer yet again.
Now, however, Scott is planning to follow in his wife and step-daughter’s footsteps – with a charity fundraiser inspired by their own incredible efforts. And Emma is planning a new book.
Soon Scott will go under the hairdresser’s clippers to have all his hair shaved off for charity.
He’s even convinced two of his police colleagues at the Bilston Glen control room to join him. And he’s hoping that by the time the sponsored “hair-a-thon” comes around on August 25, he’ll have persuaded even more.
Scott, 47, noticed a strange mole on his stomach in April following a golf holiday in Portugal.
“Having seen what Emma’s mum Rosie went through, I knew it was important to get checked out as soon as possible,” he said. “I’m glad I did.”
He underwent surgery last month to remove the tumour and learned last week that the operation has been a success.
When Scott goes under the clippers, he’ll be following what’s now become a family tradition for raising money for special causes which dates back to when Emma was born. She arrived prematurely, weighing just 3lb 7oz and spent her first thee weeks at the special care babies unit at Edinburgh’s Royal Infirmary. When she was just nine years old, she raised £500 for the unit selling her homemade cakes and her toy collection.
Then when Rosie discovered she had breast cancer in 2012, the mum-of-two set about raising thousands for Breast Cancer Care by rallying her friends into posing for a “bare all” calendar inspired by the film Calendar Girls.
But the stress of knowing her mum was sick left Emma tortured and upset. Rather than bottle it up, she poured out her thoughts on paper.
She worked with cancer support experts at Maggie’s Centre at the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh to create her amazing book. Since then it has raised hundreds of pounds for the organisation. Her efforts led to her being named Young Scot of the Year 2014. She also won a prestigious Diana Award.
Emma, 15, said she was considering writing a second Eek! book.
“I couldn’t believe it when Scott said he had skin cancer,” said Emma. “It’s been different from my mum’s breast cancer. So now I’m thinking of doing another book.”
Scott Reid is raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support. Go to www.bravetheshave.org.uk/shavers/scott-reid for more details.