Chris Calley was diagnosed with glioblastoma on 13 April 2018, which coincidentally falls on the same date as this year’s Canberra Times Australian Running Festival. To recognise 12 months since Chris’ life-changing diagnosis, his partner, Amy, and his sister, Abby, have joined Team Cure Brain Cancer for this year’s event in a show of support to Chris, while aiming to raise $8,000 between them to help fund vital brain cancer research, advocacy and awareness.
Ahead of their run, Amy & Abby have each written of their motivation to do their bit to improve outcomes for people who, like Chris, are living with brain cancer.
Words by Amy, Chris' partner.
Chris was diagnosed with brain cancer on 13 April 2018, which ironically is the same date as this year’s Canberra Times Australian Running Festival. Throughout his journey, Chris has been supported by an incredible team of doctors and medical staff, as well as by friends and family members. Canberra Hospital, Chris’ local GP, Macarthur Cancer Therapy Centre and Liverpool Hospital have all provided the highest quality of care and for that, we will all be forever grateful.
One thing that I particularly admire about Chris is his strength,
humour and positivity. He not only takes on each hurdle with a smile on his
face, but also manages to make those around him laugh too. He has continued to
motivate me in all areas of my life.
I am not only participating in this event for Chris but for everyone out there that is burdened by this terrible disease. The immensity of suffering that brain cancer causes to individuals and families is deeply distressing to me and I hope that we can all work towards improving the longevity and quality of life of cancer sufferers.
Words by Abby, Chris' sister.
I struggle to express the depth of how greatly Chris' diagnosis affected my family and I feel as though words do not suffice for that. I grew up knowing that cancer was destructive to families and individuals, but I was always naive to the idea of it affecting one of my own.
It greatly affected our family dynamics. Our oldest brother, Mitchell, lives in Canberra, and now he comes home every second weekend to ensure everyone is doing as well as they can be. Whilst it is amazing to see Mitchell and his fiancé, Kate, it is bitter sweet, and we now know and understand how precious family time is.
My dad works internationally, and he had to take quite some time off work, so that in itself was a massive change for us! With Chris being medically unable to drive, he has been dependent on others to drive him not only to and from treatment each day, but anywhere he must go. Over the past 12 months, we have adjusted to that as a new ‘normal’.
Although I feel a great sense of honour and pride running with and for Team Cure Brain Cancer, it also hits all too close to home. For me, there is now a drive to do something in hope that ideally no family must experience the challenges we have faced with over the last 12 months, and this is the ultimate way to do so.
Having a meaningful purpose to raise money and run for someone who potentially is unable to do so is a very humbling feeling. So, why not ditch your next morning coffee and donate the money to anyone running for an incredible cause instead!
Between them, Amy & Abby aim to raise $8,000 to help bring Cure Brain Cancer Foundation closer to achieving our mission to improve five-year brain cancer survival to 50% by 2023. Abby is aiming to raise $3,000, while Amy is aiming to raise $5,000.
- To donate to Abby's personal fundraising page, click here
- To donate to Amy's personal fundraising page, click here
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