BLIGH PARK resident Dee Cairns is a survivor of three different cancers and will be participating in this year’s Hawkesbury Relay For Life to represent those who have survived cancer, and those who have not been so lucky.
Ms Cairns is still recovering from her most recent diagnosis in December of lymphoma, after which she underwent six months of chemotherapy.
She said during this time her normal routine changed from being active and socialising, to hospital visits and losing her hair.
“Chemotherapy is never an enjoyable thing, but I was lucky enough to have treatment at the newly-established chemotherapy unit at Hawkesbury hospital,” said Ms Cairns.
“I am very happy that the date for relay was changed this year as I would not have been able to participate in May due to my treatment. With the September date I will be able to attend and do a few laps, but certainly nothing like the number of steps as in the past.”
Ms Cairns is a member of team All Sorts, made up of cancer survivors and people who have cared for those with cancer, and the team will participating in the Relay at Hawkesbury Showground from 9.30am Saturday, September 9 to 10am Sunday, September 10.
Ms Cairns said though she won’t be as actively involved in this year’s Relay as she has in previous years, she will be there to support the other participants.
“I am proud to wear my survivor sash each year. I am one of the lucky ones that have survived cancer. Many others have not been so lucky,” she said.
“I remember family and friends that have not been as lucky and wear my sash to honour those people.
“Walking is only part of the weekend. There are lots of other fun things to do, which I will certainly be enjoying.”
Ms Cairns said the Relay was also an opportunity for her to thank those who had helped her during her most recent cancer experience.
“Many of my team mates helped me through what has been a very difficult year so far,” she said.
“I’ve been able to call on these friends who I wouldn’t even know if I hadn’t joined relay.”
Team All Sorts will host a morning tea fundraiser on Sunday, August 27 at Hawkesbury Masonic Centre on George Street in Windsor from 11am. The cost is $15, and there will be raffles, guessing competitions, a lolly bar and trivia.
The 2017 Hawkesbury Relay For Life aims to raise $130,000 for Cancer Council NSW. To find out more about the Relay or to register, visit relayforlife.org.au/hawkesbury. The cost is $20 and everyone who registers will receive a Relay For Life shirt.