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Meet our Team Worldwide runners – it’s Steve and Cheryl!

Most people who take part in a charity event to raise money for Worldwide Cancer Research have lost a loved one from the disease or have someone close to them who is fighting. Steve Carter (35) from Gosport is no exception as his sister, Cheryl, has just recovered from breast cancer. But Cheryl won’t just be cheering Steve on, she’ll be running with him!

The duo watched their brother Matt compete in the 2017 Great South Run and Cheryl convinced Steve they should both take part in 2018. After starting to train, Cheryl received some terrible news.

“In March last year, Cheryl was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer and needed to undergo treatment immediately so we were no longer able to run together,” Steve says. “She supported me, my brothers and sister in law from the side-lines while she went through treatment.”

Cheryl (55) has now completed her treatment and has the all clear so the duo decided to celebrate by running the iconic London Marathon for Worldwide Cancer Research together.

“We both wanted to raise money for a cancer charity and Cheryl found out about Worldwide Cancer Research and the vital research it funds to fight the hundreds of types of cancer. She won a place to run and spurred me on to join her in this experience of a lifetime.” says Steve.

“Thankfully Cheryl is now in remission and we are able to share this wonderful journey together. Many of our relatives have also been affected by cancer in the past and we are passionate about supporting Worldwide Cancer Research by raising as much money as we can to fight cancer.”

 

Steve and Cheryl have a target of £4400 to raise and are determined to do everything they can to fund pioneering research in the UK and across the world.

If you’ve been inspired by Steve and Cheryl’s story and would love to be part of Team Worldwide, check out our list of fantastic events suitable for everyone! And if you would like to donate in support of the incredible work Worldwide Cancer Research funds, please click here.

Meet our Team Worldwide Runners – it’s Liam O’Sullivan!

To take part in such an iconic race through the sights and sounds of London is something that many people spend years dreaming of. One of our supporters, Liam Roberts O’Sullivan, is realising his dream of running the London Marathon this year in memory of his dad, Kevin, who took part in one of the first ever London Marathons in 1983.

“Growing up, we did a lot of running together,” says Liam. “It was always my dad’s dream for us to run the London Marathon together. But as I grew up, I fell out of love with it. When my dad was ill and then passed away, I decided that it was time for me to finally do it in his honour.”

Liam’s dad Kevin O’Sullivan was diagnosed with Oesophagus cancer at the end of 2016. Sadly, he passed away in May 2017 at the age of just 60.

“Dad passed away peacefully at home. The cancer had spread so quickly and robbed him, like many others, of time and life he still had to live,” says Liam. “Running suddenly became my way of dealing with the guilt, the anger, the sadness. Running helped me focus my thoughts and keep my mind healthy.”

Kevin O’Sullivan worked as a Deputy Head at a junior school and retired only a couple of years before he died.

“Generations of people knew him, and he ended up teaching children whose parents he had taught,” says Liam. “He’s my inspiration for running, it’s such a shame that we never got to run the marathon together as he wished.”

Liam set it upon himself to run the marathon himself for a charity close to him and his dad. “I tried the ballot a couple of times for a place to run but was unsuccessful but then I found out about Worldwide Cancer Research on Twitter and I took it as a sign, it was the perfect opportunity,” he says.

“The charity spoke to me and I learned that they currently have a study underway in Belgium to further understand oesophagus cancer. More than 8,500 new cases of Oesophageal cancer are diagnosed in the UK every year. That means over 23 people receive a diagnosis every day. This is why such research is vital and I wanted to help.”

Liam’s father had the race time of 4 hours and 19 minutes and Liam is hoping to better it and complete the marathon in a time close to 4 hours. He hopes to raise £2500 for Worldwide Cancer Research.

If you’ve been inspired by Liam's story and would love to be part of Team Worldwide, check out our list of fantastic events suitable for everyone! And if you would like to donate in support of the incredible work Worldwide Cancer Research funds, please click here.

Meet our Team Worldwide runners – it’s Nada El Sawy!

At Worldwide Cancer Research we fund pioneering cancer research all over the world. Because of this international element, we’re delighted to have supporters from all across the globe raising money for us. They, like us, know that a treatment or cure for cancer could be found by any scientist, anywhere in the world.

Nada El Sawy is Egyptian-American and currently lives in Dubai with her husband and three sons, aged 8, 10 and 13. She is one of the many runners taking part in this year’s London Marathon, in memory of her mother (below) who sadly passed away from lymphoma in June 2018.

“My mom was diagnosed in March and passed away in June so it was a real shock. I had already signed up to run the Boston Marathon in April and was really excited about it. My mom was due to watch me and the flights and hotel room had been booked. Unfortunately, after her diagnosis, she had to start chemotherapy immediately so I went to LA after the marathon to see her instead. We had hoped she would make a full recovery but she started to deteriorate after the fourth cycle. She was only 60 when she died.” she says.

“I searched for a while for the right charity to support when running the London Marathon this year to honour my mom and Worldwide Cancer Research is perfect. I like that it’s not limited to geography or a certain kind of cancer, it’s given me a more personal mission and I’d like to raise as much money as I can. I hope that one day no one has to suffer from cancer like my mom did and no one has to bear such a heavy loss.”

Nada, who is 39 and works as a financial journalist, is no stranger to running and marathons. “I’ve been running since high school,” she says. “I ran in track and then completed my first marathon in college. I’ve since run in seven marathons including Paris, Boston and Berlin. I’ve always wanted to do London and eventually I’d like to do New York, Tokyo and Chicago. I want to tick off all the major ones. I really wanted to take part in the London Marathon because it’s iconic and gives you a new perspective on the city.”

Living in Dubai, Nada has a more intense training regime as she has the heat to contend with. But she has a great support network who are cheering her on.

“I am a member of a running club called the Desert Road Runners and I have a good training partner. A lot of us are currently training for marathons so it’s great to have others to train with and we support each other.

“My family are also very supportive. I’ve been encouraging my three boys to participate in races, they don’t like it as much as I do but they like getting medals! Last week one of them ran a 5k while the other two ran a 3k. I was very proud seeing them stand up on the podium in their age categories.”

Nada has set herself a challenge of raising £5000 for Worldwide Cancer Research in this year’s London Marathon.

“My mom never got to see me run a marathon so this is dedicated to her, who I know will be watching from above.”

If you’ve been inspired by Nada’s story and would love to be part of Team Worldwide, check out our list of fantastic events suitable for everyone! And if you would like to donate in support of the incredible work Worldwide Cancer Research funds, please click here.

Meet our Team Worldwide runners – it’s Laura Rawlings!

Running a marathon is no mean feat for anyone. Completing 26 gruelling miles is a huge achievement and we’re delighted to have such dedicated people who will be taking on the challenge this year at the London Marathon to raise money for Worldwide Cancer Research.

Completing a marathon to raise money for a good cause is a very selfless act but one of our Team Worldwide runners, 37-year-old Laura Rawlings from Devon, is doing it for herself as well as the countless others facing a cancer diagnosis. Laura has suffered from mental health problems and finds that running makes her feel a little better. It doesn’t cure her. It doesn’t fix all of her problems but it helps and she has chosen to turn that little piece of positivity into something great.

“I’ve been running on and off since 2014 and have always wanted to complete a marathon and couldn’t do it for a better cause,” she says. “I’ve struggled with mental health problems for years to the point where I’ve almost been sectioned and on bad days, I can’t leave the house. I’m unable to work because of it but when I run, it does help. It gives me a sense of freedom and time to myself to just think. It doesn’t fix things but it helps to lift my mood. This marathon will be a real personal challenge and I am determined to complete it.”

Like many others, Laura has family and friends who have suffered with cancer and chose to support Worldwide Cancer Research to help pioneering researchers to discover new, better ways to diagnose, prevent and treat cancer.

She is running in memory of her beloved aunt and to help support her good friend who is currently going through treatment.

“When I first started running, I ran for my Auntie Julie who had breast cancer at the time. We were like sisters and she was only 30 when she was diagnosed. Unfortunately she has since passed away. She had a double mastectomy but the cancer returned and it went into her bones. Nearly everyone in my family has been affected by some sort of cancer. One week after I found out I had a place in the marathon to run for Worldwide Cancer Research, I found out my good friend Hannah had breast cancer. I immediately cut my hair short to support her and my hair was past my bum so this was a huge deal for me. I donated the hair to help others going through cancer treatment.”

Laura starts her training in January. Although she’s not sticking to a rigid plan, she will be increasing the length of runs as she goes. “I’m not putting pressure on myself to make a certain time,” she says. “I’m just looking forward to turning up and doing it.”

As well as the run itself, Laura has been trying other novel ways to raise money.

“When we found out Hannah had breast cancer, my friends and I all wanted to help and so we staged a topless photoshoot to raise even more money and awareness, she says. “One of our friends is a boudoir photographer so it was very tastefully done. We want to generate as much awareness as we can and encourage women to check themselves. We had a real mix of women involved including a lady who has had reconstruction surgery. Local press were interested and we ran a competition to win a boudoir shoot and it was really successful. I’m just glad to do what I can to raise money and awareness for such an important cause and incredible charity.”

If you've been inspired by Laura's story and would love to join Team Worldwide, check out our list of amazing events which we have places for in 2019! And if you would like to donate in support of the fantastic work Worldwide Cancer Research funds, please click here.