Friends’ marathon walk a trib­ute to can­cer vic­tim

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Helping Others - By Sa­man­tha Wil­liams

Two friends are gear­ing up to trek 26.2 miles, the same dis­tance as walk­ing around a football pitch 121 times, in aid of a can­cer char­ity.

Filiz Wood­house, 40, and Rachel Sal­is­bury, 38, both from Ash­ford, will take part in Can­cer Re­search UK’s night-time walk­ing marathon, the Shine Night Walk, in Lon­don on Satur­day, Septem­ber 26.

Their jour­ney will start at 10.15pm at South­wark Park, and will see them pass Tower Bridge, The Gherkin, St Paul’s Cathe­dral, the BT Tower, Mar­ble Arch, The Royal Al­bert Hall, Har­rods, Houses of Par­lia­ment and The Globe, be­fore fin­ish­ing at Old Billings­gate.

It will take them any­where be­tween an es­ti­mated nine and 14 hours, mean­ing they’ll fin­ish some time on Sun­day, Septem­ber 27 – which would have been Filiz’s late mum’s birth­day.

The mum-of-one, from Lit­tle Bur­ton Farm, ex­plains: “Our world came crash­ing down in 2013 when my mum, Melek Eren, was di­ag­nosed with stage four pan­cre­atic can­cer.

“Un­be­known to us she was given two months to live, but she fought hard.

“With the aid of chemo­ther­apy mum’s tu­mours be­gan to shrink and her life was ex­tended. This gave us a few pre­cious months with mum and goals were reached - she man­aged to see my brother marry, the first birthdays of her two grand­daugh­ters and the birth of her great-niece.”

Melek, who was known as Mary, sadly died in March 2104.

Filiz adds: “Ev­ery­one I know has ex­pe­ri­enced the loss of a loved one through can­cer.

“I am hop­ing to raise as much as I can so a cure can be found so another fam­ily isn’t robbed of their loved one.”

The chal­lenge will be par­tic­u­larly hard for mum-of-three Rachel, of Or­chard Heights, as she is suf­fer­ing from ill health and is off work.

Her symp­toms in­clude achy bones, tin­gling hands and feet, marks on her skin and tired­ness, and she is now await­ing a di­ag­no­sis of sus­pected vas­culi­tis, an au­toim­mune dis­or­der.

She said: “I’m strug­gling to walk around the block at the mo­ment. We have been train­ing but it is hard.

“But we have been plan­ning the walk since Easter and I am de­ter­mined to do it. I don’t care how long it takes me.”

To spon­sor the two women visit www.just­giv­ing. com/FilizWood­house/ or www.just­giv­ing.com/ RachelSal­is­bury2015/

Filiz Wood­house and Rachel Sal­is­bury. Inset, Feliz’s mum Melek Eren

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