A businessman has traded in his Porsche for the school bus to spend more time with his terminally ill daughter.
John Silk was scared that his high-flying job running an employment agency would make him miss out on life with his daughter, so he quit his job, sold his car and began obsessively cutting his costs to raise the funds needed to realise his daughter Vicky’s dream of travelling.
Vicky, who was diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome and Eisenmenger’s Complex – a heart and lung condition – as a baby, was given a life expectancy of just 15 years when she was eight 8 months old. However she is now 22, and for years only saw her father at weekends after her parents separated.
But now, after he took a job as a school bus assistant, he sees her off the bus and in to school every day. In an interview with The Mirror he explained:
All we’ve done is work ourselves in to the ground when we could have been working less and making memories with Vicky. I got a job on the bus so I could see her every day. When she’d see me in the mornings she’d run down the road calling out to me then give me a hug.
After taking on lower paid jobs, the couple then learned money-saving tips so they could save up to treat Vicky and in 14 years they have been on 24 trips and seen about 15 countries.
Highlights of their spectacular journeys include meeting Vicky’s idol, Mary Poppins, at Disneyland in Florida – the only time she has been speechless – and with the help of charity Dreams Come True they realised her biggest wish of seeing an active volcano, organising a helicopter ride over one in Hawaii.
Mr Silk said:
I try not to think about what life will be like without Vicky. Instead of thinking of the end, we try and think of all the beginnings we’re yet to have. But in the meantime we couldn’t be happier. Vicky has taught me what life is about.
Hope you have many happy years of awesome experiences to come guys.