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Dad’s dying wish comes true as autistic son gives hug for first time | UK | News

A dad given just one year to live gets his most precious gift – a hug from his severely autistic son. Ewen Johnstone, seven, who struggles with physical contact, is shown reaching out to embrace his stunned father Richard.

The moving moment came after his exhausted dad, 49, had just returned from a particularly gruelling hospital appointment.

IT technician Richard, who has been battling liver and bowel failure for 33 years and now has terminal bladder cancer, said: “Ewen came over to me and just put his arms around me.

“For some, this might not be a big deal, but for us it’s mega. Ewen has non-verbal autism and doesn’t do things on his own.

“After I got that hug, it was like something changed in me. I was even able to eat my favourite tea – steak and chips – for the first time in two and a half years.

“A hug isn’t something he’d give us voluntarily because he doesn’t show affection through physical touch. So that first hug was so special, because it’s like Ewen knew I needed one.”

Dad-of-five Richard, of Bedworth, West Midlands, was born with the rare condition FAP (familial adenomatous polyposis) – a gene fault that increases the risk of bowel cancer.

He has had a series of major operations, but in December doctors found he had bladder cancer, which has spread to his large intestine and kidney.

Richard and his wife Susan, 48, knew each other at school and reconnected over Facebook in 2014.

Ewen, their first child together, was born in 2016.

He said: “I have four children from a previous relationship and Susan has two of her own. While we weren’t new to parenting, when we had Ewen it was like we had to learn again.

“He knows his dad isn’t well and not to touch my tubes. He’s taken it well.”

Richard added: “Even though I’m on limited time, there’s no point stressing out about it. I would love to have a pint with Ewen when he’s 18, but what’s happening is happening and we’ve got to just accept it.

“If I lament on it, the last year of my life won’t be the best, so I’ve got to make the most of the time I’ve got left.

“Every day is a bonus and every hug I get from Ewen means the world.”

*This story has not been edited by The Infallible staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.