Mother and daughter take cancer lead

Witney Gazette: Cordelia Gover with mum Gillian Harries and Sidney the spaniel. Picture: OX66202 David Fleming Buy this photo Cordelia Gover with mum Gillian Harries and Sidney the spaniel. Picture: OX66202 David Fleming

A WOMAN who battled breast cancer aged 32 will join the 10th year of a county fundraiser next month with her mum who helped her beat the disease.

Cordelia Gover will take part in the Blenheim Palace Pink Ribbonwalk with Gillian Harries on Saturday, May 10, for Breast Cancer Care.

More than 800 women are expected to take part to raise more than £230,000 for the charity’s work to support cancer sufferers.

East Hagbourne resident and mum-of-two Mrs Gover, 39, will take part for the second year running.

She said of her diagnosis: “I was living in Australia at the time and my mum came straight out, even though she hated flying, and stayed with me for two months while I went through all the horrible chemotherapy and radiotherapy.”

She was given the all-clear eight years ago but had a further shock when she tested positive for a mutation of the BRCA1 gene, which increases the risk of cancer.

She said: “Last year I underwent preventative surgery, the removal of my ovaries and my breasts, followed by reconstructive surgery.

“Once more my mum was my rock, caring for me and also being there for my husband and our two young daughters.”

Mrs Gover walked last year’s Pink Ribbonwalk with her Cocker Spaniel Sidney, completing the 10-mile route in three hours and raising £1,600.

She said: “The Breast Cancer Care charity does such great work, and I was pleased to be involved.

“When I heard it was the 10th anniversary event this year I asked my mum to do it with me and Sidney, and even though she is 73 and has never done anything like this before, she agreed.”

She added: “Having had the preventative surgery last year I feel this is a real turnaround year for me and it’s really special I will be doing this with my mum, who has been there for me throughout it all.

“She is a very quiet person, but has a real inner strength.”

Her mother, who also lives in East Hagbourne, said: “It has been very difficult seeing Cordelia go through cancer.

“But we have coped and I am really looking forward to doing the Ribbonwalk with her and Sidney this year.”

Walkers can tackle a 10- or 20-mile route for the charity, which provides specialist nurses and emotional support for sufferers.

Pink Ribbonwalk manager Lucy Johnston said: “Through the money raised at our Pink Ribbonwalks Breast Cancer Care has been able to support thousands of mothers and daughters affected by breast cancer.”

Registration costs £30 and walkers are asked to raise £100 and get free entry to the grounds of the Woodstock stately home, with a reduced fee for friends and family. They aslo get a T-shirt, training guide and a massage, meal and medal at the finishing line.

To register, visit breastcancercare.org.uk/walk or call 0870 145 0101.

Are you entering? Tell the Oxford Mail by emailing nqonews@nqo.com

WALK FIGURES

Ten years of the Pink Ribbonwalk at Blenheim:

  • 165,150 – Miles walked at Blenheim since the first Ribbonwalk in 2005 – equivalent to 6.6 times around the Earth
  • 9,487 – the number of people who have taken part
  • £3,020,000 – Money raised
  • 13,230 – The number of pink ribbons people hang like bunting as they walk towards the finish line
  • 630 – The volunteers who have helped out
  • 34,998 – Bottles of water drunk by participants
  •  9,251 – Cups of tea drunk

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