Justin Cooper

An interview with Justin Cooper: 'It makes me immensely proud to know that my story is helping people in so many ways'

In an exclusive interview with Bridging & Commercial, Justin Cooper, senior BDM at Octane Capital (pictured above), shared his experience writing and publishing a book based on his tumultuous life journey living with cancer.

The autobiography, titled '40 Years of Overcoming Cancer: My Inspirational Story’ and written in partnership with Story Terrace, takes an in-depth look at Justin’s experience, from the time he was initially diagnosed with fibrosarcoma as a teenager — which led to his leg being amputated — all the way to present day.

“I loved every minute of [writing] it and Story Terrace made it so easy to bring it all together to end up with a version of the book that I could then go and get published,” said Justin.

“The hardest part was trying to balance what I included and what I left out — in hindsight (and after feedback from people that have known me for 40 years) there’s probably a few things extra that I could have put in there. I’ll maybe have to save those for the sequel!”

His decision to write and publish the book was a result of two reasons: his determination to show others that cancer may not be the end of the line, and his desire to raise money for Cancer Research UK and other similar charities.

“My absolute number one wish is that people take inspiration from my story. Yes, over the years I have been through some tough times, but I have had an absolutely amazing life and would not want to change a thing,” he said.

“I believe that everything good in my life has been a result of what happened to me when I was a teenager. 

“People can very easily believe that a cancer diagnosis could mean the end, but it certainly doesn’t have to, and with the advances of modern medicine, cancer sufferers can go on to live completely fulfilled lives.” 

And he’s certainly achieved his goals, as Justin explained that he received amazing feedback from people on the book, and even got messages from others living with cancer, saying that the book inspired them.

So far, Justin has raised over £2,000 from selling copies via Amazon and directly to friends and colleagues.

“Everyone has been so wonderful with the words of support and feedback.

“It makes me immensely proud to know that my story is helping people in so many ways.”

Justin continues to raise money for cancer charities though the sales of his book, which is now available on his own website in order to maximise donations.

He also encourages businesses to support employees struggling with physical and mental illnesses — something he said he was very fortunate to have at Octane Capital and his other previous companies.

“I have been so fortunate that, wherever I have been working through my entire life, my employer has been incredibly supportive through periods of illness,” he said.

“In my time at Octane Capital, I have had a couple of instances where I have ended up in hospital and there has never been any pressure on me to rush back to work, and every one of my colleagues has helped in one way or another to keep my business moving and ensure my brokers have not been affected by my absence. 

“Support of this nature makes it so much more reassuring to know that work is one thing less to worry about while your mind might be more focussed on getting better. 

“For me, this just makes me want to give back to my employer when I am able to and do my best to be there for my colleagues when they need it.

“Looking after your staff in times of need will always reap rewards for those employers who make it their priority to care for their employees when they require it most.”

Leave a comment