Chris Fletcher warns against smoking.
Chris Fletcher warns against smoking. Brett Wortman

This quiet warning to quit smoking speaks volumes

CHRIS Fletcher's warning might be made in a hushed voice, but the reason he speaks so quietly is the most important point.

If the 59-year-old had his time again, he would never touch a cigarette.

Mr Fletcher started smoking when he was 20 and quit just before his 40th birthday when packets started bearing health warnings and he developed a nasty cough.

Four years later, Mr Fletcher was at a local GP who looked under his tongue and questioned the sizeable lump in his throat.

"I was taken straight to the hospital and had a biopsy and they said, 'You've got cancer' - that was a shock," he said.

A week later, Mr Fletcher underwent "massive" surgery to remove the cancer.

Mr Fletcher recovered well and, three years later, he was considered in remission.

But six months later, a secondary cancer was discovered in his thyroid.

The nerves to the right of Mr Fletcher's voice box were severed and he will never again speak in anything but a hushed voice.

"The lesson is, don't start smoking. If you do start, stop and get regular check-ups.

"I'm lucky they caught the cancer early, otherwise I'd be dead by 44."



Red tape blamed for ‘rapid’ SES member decline

Premium Content Red tape blamed for ‘rapid’ SES member decline

The ranks of Queensland’s SES volunteers is the thinnest in recent history, with...

Warwick man fronts court over two-year string of burglary, DV

Premium Content Warwick man fronts court over two-year string of burglary...

The man claimed he was going to use the stolen goods worth more than $5K to fuel...

Teen suffers ‘significant’ leg injury in workplace incident

Premium Content Teen suffers ‘significant’ leg injury in workplace incident

Paramedics remain at the scene of the incident north of Warwick.