900km challenge to raise awareness of pancreatic cancer

Emma Billingham


The challenge of cycling, running, swimming and climbing 900km in one week is being taken on by friends aiming to raise awareness of pancreatic cancer.

Sam Luff lost her partner David Oldroyd to the disease in 2014, as well as her grandmother in 2005 and grandfather in 2001.

On Saturday, Sept-ember 17, the 32-year-old personal trainer and her friend of 16 years, Chris Bowyer, are setting off to visit the birth places of those she has lost before finishing on Saturday, September 24 at Holy Trinity Church in Cookham where they are all laid to rest.

Sam, who lives in Graham Road, will be raising money for Pancreatic Cancer Action.

She said: “I wanted to combine the three members of my family I have lost. It seemed logical that as they are all laid to rest in Cookham that I come up with an idea to go from start to finish.

“We are cycling the majority of it, climbing Scafell Pike and swimming Lake Windermere. It’s 900km in total.

“I know it is going to be incredibly emotional, especially at the end coming back to the church, that will be really heartbreaking.”

She paid tribute to David’s mother Pauline, who lost her husband 50 years ago as well as her only son, adding: “She still manages to smile and give everyone everything she can. She’s been an inspiration.”

Sam, mother to six-year-old Anabella, encouraged people to go to their GP if they believe something is wrong.

David, who was 50 when he passed away, complained of an upset stomach for eight months that he put down to stress before it was diagnosed as stage four pancreatic cancer.

Sam added: “It’s anything to do with digestion. Not enough people listen to their bodies, but we all know when something isn’t 100 per cent.”

Sam and Chris, from Wooburn, have set themselves a target of £5,000 to raise for Pancreatic Cancer Action from their ‘Full Cycle Challenge’.

You can follow their progress on Twitter during the week at @doingitfordave1.

Visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/fullcyclechallenge to sponsor them.


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