His daughter Flora appeared on the BBC morning show to open up about the “huge loss” she feels after losing her dad, who was “the light of her life and centre of the family”.
She began: “Losing dad was such a huge thing for us, and our family obviously. I think first of all I wanted to have a purpose this year and to remember Dad in the most purposeful way possible, and this felt like I could pay tribute to him in a way that was personal for him as he ran the marathon a few times and also in a way to highlight this cause for Prostate Cancer UK.”
Flora added that she felt so “very proud” of everything her father did, including raising awareness of this form of cancer after his diagnosis.
She continued: “He was the most wonderful dad, he was everything you would want a father to be.
“He was fun, he as gregarious, he was like he was on television, he was great to be around, he could also be grumpy in the best way possible where we would all tease him and he would tease us.
She added: “He was the real light of our lives and he was the centre of our family so losing him has been a huge loss for us, but equally I feel so incredibly lucky to have him as a father.”
Flora reflected on a sweet moment that her dad encouraged her to “rely on herself” after a break up.
She said: “I think he was a very empowering father and he wanted me to feel like I had that inner strength, so I really feel that exemplifies what he was like as a dad.”
Throughout his time on BBC Breakfast until he left in 2016, Bill was a “very private man” but after he was diagnosed he opened up about his cancer to encourage men to get tested and catch it early.
Flora said: “It was a very difficult time for him so to be so open about how he was coping with cancer, both emotionally and physically that was very difficult for him to do.
As he was a journalist, she thought: “He wasn’t used to that… he was always very outward looking, he was never self-centred or a self-absorbed person.”
She also got to speak with Alan, a man who had seen Bill’s call for men to get checked on BBC Breakfast and went to the doctors to discover he had advanced Prostate Cancer too.
Alan told Flora: “It was fairly well advanced so had I not seen your father on the television, I wouldn’t have done anything and who knows where I would have been today.”
He praised Bill’s honesty for discussing such a difficult topic, as Alan is certain that it saved his life.
He continued: “I’d like to thank Flora for what your father did. I think he was very brave to come out as I don’t think men like to talk about things like that. I do appreciate that so much as I do think I’m here now because of your dad.”