William John Dumbelton

William John Dumbelton
Born 30th September, 1942
Died aged 49 on 23rd October, 1991


With less than 0.01 Factor Vlll in his blood, William was a severe haemophiliac, and because of that he suffered from many bleeding episodes throughout his life.  He was a smart man who loved a shirt and tie, and right to the end was always showered, suited and booted.

William was a generous man, and one who had many interests.  He loved reading, Sci-Fi and going to horse racing meetings.  He also enjoyed cricket and used to go to Middlesex, and later on Leicester, cricket clubs.

In 1978, he married Linda in Islington, North London. They met when they both worked for the GPO (Now BT) in the City of London.  They set up home in Highbury and later moved to Peterborough.  Because of his condition, William and Linda decided not to have a family; something that Linda later regretted. Even now, despite ‘moving on’ with her life, Linda still feels the stigma that led to this decision.

Having contracted HIV through blood products, it was perhaps no surprise that his employers refused to give him a job when he moved.  Linda is convinced that the reason for this was the stigma that went hand-in–hand with HIV at that time.

William was under the care of the University College Hospital, London, and his ‘claim to fame’ was that he was the first person to treat himself at home intravenously.

Following this, William became deeply depressed about his status, and was afraid of people finding out.  He suffered from raised blood pressure and in Linda’s words:  ‘It was such a sad life, really…’

Despite all his health problems, William’s death, when it came, was totally unexpected.  He died of a brain haemorrhage, on ‘just an ordinary evening’ with his wife by his side.

Even after so many years have passed, Linda would ‘…love justice for everyone affected by this awful blunder’ and sends ‘much love’ to everyone affected.

Posted by Sue Threakall

Comments (2)

William a true gentle man there are so many heartbreaking stories on here ,can only read a couple at a time ,but people need to know how this has affected every part of our being ,god bless you William ,so sad love colin jan xxx

The prejudice and ignorance were so rampant during the ’80s and ’90s, instilling fear and the need for secrecy… I have a few regrets, and am truly sorry for William’s untimely death. What I see holds true for this community, and that which surrounds me still, is the brilliant courage and grace, humor and dignity of those lost to us and those who still inspire.

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