You were the strength behind force of Irfon
YOUR CHAMPIONS HONOUR CANCER CAMPAIGNER’S WIDOW
THE widow of inspirational cancer campaigner Irfon Williams was crowned Champion of Champions at a glittering ceremony.
The Your Champions Awards, in partnership with Trinity Mirror (North Wales) and Scottish-Power Foundation, celebrates the region’s unsung heroes in the community.
Becky Williams was hailed as the “strength behind the force that was Irfon” who fought for cancer treatment in Wales during his own devastating battle with the disease. She kept him in good humour and was the one who supported his mission to give back to the community of Bangor.
A trained nurse, Becky also shared her husband’s passion for mental health, and Team Irfon’s success has always laid in Becky’s planning, attention to detail, knowledge and superb organisational skills. Presenting her with the award at the 20th awards dinner at St George’s Hotel in Llandudno, broadcaster and host Arfon Haines Davies, said: “Irfon wouldn’t have managed to make such impressive strides with his campaigning had Becky not been by his side. Irfon’s legacy will live on because of her tenacity, good will and resolve to better her community and ensure that others lead full and rewarding lives as Irfon did.
“Becky is a superb wife, mother and a friend to many. This should be celebrated, but this is not why she deserves to be recognised.
“Like many, Becky has long been a supporter of local charities... and has continued to be supportive since Irfon passed, extending the reach of Team Irfon to the Liver Unit in Aintree Hospital and connecting with the Liverpool Welsh community and others. She has also been a champion for many of the most vulnerable in society.
“At a time when she herself needed support, she has given a lot of support and hope to people in North Wales and beyond.”
The Champion Young Person of the Year award went to 12-yearold Luke Ashton, hailed a superhero by best friend, Lillie McCabe-Allen who nominated him. In a letter, she branded her pal as “courageous and amazing” as he tries to lead a normal life despite being diagnosed with stage four Hodgkins Lymphoma.
The overall winner of the Sporting Champion of the Year category was RGC (Rygbi Gogledd Cymru) 1404 who “have been on a journey to success over the last few years.”
In September 2016, RGC entered the Principality Premiership and in doing so became the first ever North Wales representative team. RGC not only finished fourth in their first season in the premiership, they scored the most tries in the league, enjoyed a successful run in the WRU National Cup and were crowed WRU National Cup champions when they beat Pontypridd RFC.
The overall winner of the Champion Team of the Year was the Ynys Mon Ramblers ‘Silver Slashers,’ who have been improving the Anglesey public footpaths for the last 11 years.
The group of 22 men and women are from all walks of life with an average age of 70. Champion Volunteer of the Year title went to Eric and Emlyn Baylis. Following retirement the brothers wanted both locals and visitors of Llanberis to see the village at its very best.
They decided that it could benefit from flowers, plants and a splash of colour, so have gone about to change things.
Arfon Haines Davies said: “Both brothers have made a huge contribution to the community.”
Haf Thomas was named overall winner in the Community Champion of the Year category.
The charity Awyr Las said that they wanted “to nominate a truly fabulous young woman, who is such an inspiration.”
Haf, of Llanrug, has been supporting community projects for years and to date has raised over £51,000 for local and national charities.
Haf, who has Down’s Syndrome, is employed full time by Gwynedd Council.
Becky WiWilliams, wife of the late Irfon Williams, receives her CChampion of Champions award from Shane Williams. Inset left, Irfon
Luke Ashton, winner ‘Champion Young Person of the year’ award with his nominee Lillie McCabe-Allen, Ann McKechin of Scottish Power and Daily Post editor Andrew Campbell. Middle, Eric and Emlyn Baylis receive their Volunteer of the year award. Bottom picture, the Team of the Year went to Ynys Môn Ramblers’ Silver Slashers
Haf Thomas gets a hug from Shane Williams after being named overall winner in the Community Champion of the Year category