In an exclusive interview with Radio Times, Billy Connolly has revealed he was diagnosed with prostate cancer and Parkinson’s disease on the same day.
The 71-year-old, who is married to psychologist Pamela Stephenson, had visited the doctors where he received news of his cancer diagnosis, only to get a call telling him he had Parkinson’s just a few hours later.
“I remember I went through to the bedroom to answer the phone,” he told this week’s magazine. “Pamela was behind me – I thought she was gonna catch me. And she sort of held me and I went, ‘Oh Jesus’.”
The comedian added, “When he said, ‘First of all, you’re not gonna die,’ I was shocked. I said, ‘Of course I’m not going to f**king die.’ It never crossed my mind. It was all very businesslike.”
Connolly – who has five children and received the cancer all-clear last October – revealed he hadn’t lost his sense of humour throughout the difficult process: “I think they’re very closely related, deep despair and laughing. And I wasn’t in any pain.”
The full interview appears in this week’s Radio Times, available to buy from Tuesday 29 April