Sunday, 18 May 2014

Young cancer fundraiser dies aged 19
(Level: B1 / Intermediate to Upper-Intermediate / ** to ***)

Stephen Sutton, a 19-year-old cancer sufferer died peacefully in his sleep on Wednesday 14th May.
The young man who had been diagnosed with cancer in 2009 did not use to dwell on his misfortune. Instead, he drew up a "bucket list" (*) of things he wanted to do before he died. This led to him achieving something special that made him be known worldwide.

But what exactly did he really do?
You are going to watch a BBC report to find out.

Stephen while skydiving
Photo credit:

Before watching

The following words and notes could be useful:
to set out to...: to begin an attempt / to undertake      se fixer / s'employer à...
bowel: intestine            intestins
crowd-surfing: the fact of being passed by hand over a packed crowd, as at a rock concert.

Crowd surfing
Photo credit:

a zest of life: zest for life      goût à la vie / joie de vivre
to raise awareness: to cause... to know about      sensibiliser / faire connaître
to burst with pride: to be very proud    exploser de fierté (lit.) / être rempli de fierté
selfless: motivated by no concern for oneself    altruiste

(*) the bucket list: = wish list; derived from to kick the bucket, slang phrase for to die (passer l’arme à gauche) + list, hence “list of things to do before you die”.
The phrase was coined by screen writer Justin Zackham in his screenplay for the 2007 comedy-drama film The Bucket List (in French: "Sans Plus Attendre") starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman who played two terminally ill men on their trip with a wish list of things to do before they both finally kicked the bucket.
The Bucket List
Photo credit:

If you want to find out about Stephen's full bucket list, click HERE.

While watching

Answer the following question in French:

What exactly did Stephen do?

You can also watch the BBC clip by clicking HERE.

When you are finished, you can check your answers:

Atteint d’un cancer terminal, Stephen Sutton avait décidé d’établir une liste reprenant ses rêves à réaliser avant de mourir, tels que sauter en parachute, faire du crowdsurf ou jouer de la batterie devant un large public…  mais il s’était aussi fixé comme objectif de récolter des fonds au profit d’une association caritative œuvrant au profit des enfants et adolescents atteints, comme lui, d’un cancer. Le montant était relativement modeste au départ (10.000 livres sterling) mais lorsqu’il eut posté une photo de lui, malade, dans son lit d’hôpital, le pouce levé, appelant aux dons sur les sites de réseaux sociaux, son pari a été largement dépassé : plus de 3.000.000 de livres sterling dans la cagnotte! Et le montant ne fait que croître !

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