A PUR­PLE PATCH F OR WALK­ERS

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - EMMA CHAD­WICK

THE fam­ily of Bur­dekin woman Delia Ponti plan to honour her mem­ory this week­end with a walk to give hope to other can­cer suf­fer­ers.

In March 2014, Mrs Ponti made the most dif­fi­cult phone calls she would ever make. She rang each of her chil­dren Marissa Rossi, 40, An­thony Ponti, 39, Do­minic Ponti, 37, and Bene­dict Ponti, 34, to tell them she had been di­ag­nosed with stage 4 pan­cre­atic can­cer.

Doc­tors said there was no hope of re­mis­sion or cure. Daugh­ter Marissa said her mum was 66 and a devoted grand­mother of 10 chil­dren when she died in Novem­ber, two- and- a- half years af­ter di­ag­no­sis.

“The prospect of leav­ing Dad be­hind, and of not be­ing here to sup­port us and our chil­dren was her great­est sor­row,” she said.

“She was a self­less per­son with an enor­mous ca­pac­ity to help oth­ers.”

Marissa said 14 mem­bers of her fam­ily would join other walk­ers on The Strand on Sun­day to raise money for re­search into pan­cre­atic can­cer.

“Given the ap­palling sur­vival sta­tis­tics it is an area that needs more fo­cus, so we are putting our foot down. Sig­nif­i­cant progress has been made in the treat­ment of some can­cers, like prostate and breast, but sur­vival rates for pan­cre­atic can­cer pa­tients have barely changed in 40 years.”

Marissa said peo­ple could dress in pur­ple and join the walk by the Avner Pan­cre­atic Can­cer Foun­da­tion, or do­nate to Team Delia Ponti at puty­our­foot­down­townsville2017. go­fundraise. co m. au. The walk is on Sun­day at the Rock­pool head­land, with reg­is­tra­tion at 9am.

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