PURTON woman Lisa Hall, who is currently having treatment for breast cancer and her grandmother, who survived the disease, are part of four generations from one family gearing up to give cancer the boot at this year’s Race for Life.
Lisa, 41, and Eileen Barwood, 85, from Toothill, will be joined by Lisa’s mum, Helen Richards, 60, her sister, Katherine Hendry, 35, and ten-year-old niece Freya Hendry, all from Swindon.
Lisa has just finished her sixth and final course of chemotherapy and is due to go through surgery the day after she takes part in Race for Life.
The family hope other women will join them for the 5k or 10k events which take place in Lydiard Park, over the weekend of May 31 to June 1.
They have written a defiant slogan to cancer on trainers to show they mean business.
‘Beat It Cancer!’, emblazed on the soles, captures the fighting spirit of this year’s campaign.
Mum-of-one Lisa was diagnosed with breast cancer in November last year and is part way through her treatment.
Lisa, the dispensing optician and manager of Haine and Smith’s Bassett practice, said: “It was a terrible shock when I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I just couldn’t believe it was happening to me.
“I had an ache in my shoulder and just assumed I’d overdone it in the gym.
“I’d had a cyst in the past and thought maybe it was just that playing up. I eventually went for a check-up and ended up having a mammogram, biopsy and ultrasound scan in the same day.
“When I was told it was a stage three cancer it was like a slap in the face.”
Lisa added: “The treatment is tough and frightening. Losing my hair has also been hard but I am getting through it”.
Lisa, who has an 18-year-old son, Kieran, with her husband Neil, 47, has been encouraged that her grandmother has successfully battled breast cancer.
“Four generations of my family – aged 10 to 85 - are going to complete Race for Life even if we have to do it in wheelchairs.
“I am not doing it for myself, but for a dear friend’s dad who also had cancer.”
Lisa, who will be supported at Race for Life by some work colleagues, said: “I want something positive to come out of a really nasty experience.
“I recently finished my final chemotherapy treatment and my surgery was scheduled to take place the day after Race For Life as my doctors knew I wanted to do it. Exercise is really good therapy for the operation.
“We’ve written the message to cancer on trainers to symbolise the fact that every step we take – together with the steps being taken by tens of thousands of women at Race for Life events across the UK – will help bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.
“The work Cancer Research UK will hopefully mean that one day people won’t have to go through what I am.”
To enter Race For Life events visit www.raceforlife.org or call 0845 600 6050.