MELVILLE resident Victoria O’Neill will never forget the day her son Harry was diagnosed with bone cancer when he was just nine-years-old.
Harry went under the knife to have a tumour in his shoulder removed and the now Year 11 Fremantle CBC student has been clear of the disease for six years.
Mrs O’Neill knows that years of sarcoma research saved her son’s life and, despite already raising more than $250,000 for cancer charities, she remains as dedicated as ever to ensuring successful outcomes like Harry’s become more common.
From skydiving (six times) to trekking the Great Wall of China, Mrs O’Neill’s fundraisers have taken many forms.
This October she is back with good friend Sally Brindle and their latest venture, the Ride and Stride for Sarcoma.
“Previously we have entered a team into the Ride to Conquer Cancer but felt as momentum was growing it was time to look at organising our own event to raise more awareness for sarcoma research and direct all the funds we raise to that area,” Mrs O’Neill said.
“The event has been set up by Michelle Ainsworth whose son Mitch had Osteosarcoma.
“He was 16 and had severe pain in his left femur. He endured 18 rounds of chemo and limb salvage surgery to remove 20cm of femur that year.
“Two out of five do not survive these sarcomas but Mitch is now two and a half years clear.”
Slated for Saturday, October 28, the ride begins in Taylor Reserve in South Perth and loops through Nedlands, East Fremantle and back over the Narrows, with riders either completing one lap (50km) or two (100km).
The shorter stride component is a 5km or 10km walk or run beginning the same location.
Riders and striders pay a registration fee, with those tackling the bike course also committing to raising a minimum of $750.
“All of the money raised goes directly to medical research because all Sock it to Sarcoma events are organised by volunteers,” Mrs O’Neill said.
For more information or a registration form email email@example.com or call 9427 1744.
To donate, visit https://give.everydayhero.com/au/ride-stride-for-sarcoma.