Wakefield cancer survivor joins Race for Life at Home to mark 16th anniversary of diagnosis

An Ossett cancer survivor has set herself a trampoline challenge to mark the 16 year anniversary of her diagnosis.

Thursday, 14th May 2020, 11:41 am
Updated Thursday, 14th May 2020, 11:42 am

Nicki Embleton, 55, was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2004, an anniversary she has marked each year by joining thousands of people at Race for Life events across Yorkshire.

This year, unable to take part in the event season, she is taking part in Caner Research UK's Race for Life at Home challenge, and will aim to make 1,600 jumps on a mini trampoline in her back garden by the end of the month.

Nicki, who works as a press officer at Cancer Research UK, said: "As part of my job, from the middle of May to the end of July, I spend most of my weekends at various venues across the Yorkshire region, joining thousands of amazing people at Race for Life events. This includes Thornes Park in Wakefield and Temple Newsam Park in Leeds.

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Ossett's Nicki Embleton set herself a trampoline challenge to mark the 16 year anniversary of her diagnosis.

“But this year, Wakefield and Leeds are amongst the many Race for Life events which Cancer Research UK has had to postpone to the Autumn to protect the country’s health during the coronavirus outbreak.

"After 19 years of being at Race for Life events in a work capacity during the Spring and Summer, it is going to feel really strange for me to be at home instead, so I literately jumped at the chance to take part in Race for Life at Home - and this time it’s for me."

Wakefield's Race for Life event, including 5k, 10k, and Pretty Muddy runs, had been scheduled for June, but was postponed until October.

But the charity are keen to remind people that the fight against cancer is continuing during the coronavirus crisis.

Nicki said: “Cancer is still happening right now and we want to do everything we can to help give people more tomorrows with their loved ones.

“I had already been at press officer at Cancer Research UK for four years, when I felt a lump in my right breast. As part of my job I am always encouraging people to check themselves and go and see their doctor if they find notice any changes, so I went straight to my GP.

"After tests at the breast clinic at Dewsbury hospital, which included an ultrasound and needle biopsy, I went back for the results two weeks later - 18 May 2004. Although I knew the signs didn’t look too good, it was still a shock to hear the words ‘you have breast cancer.

“I was lucky that my cancer had been diagnosed early. I didn’t need to have a mastectomy, but still had to have surgery to remove the tumour. I then had a course of chemotherapy, followed by radiotherapy and then a year-long course of Herceptin.

“I was determined to stay as normal as possible through my treatment, so I continued to work, which included being at Race for Life that summer, and was very grateful for all the support I had from my colleagues at CRUK.

"I was also able to learn from so many other cancer patients I had worked with to share their stories in the media, who gave me really great examples of how they had dealt with their cancer. That really helped me.

“Now the coronavirus has really contributed to a feeling in our community, and at work, that we’re all in this together in another way. We’re all spending a lot of time at home indoors at the moment, so it feels good to take back some control and plan something positive to help people who are going through cancer right now.”

Visit raceforlife.org to sign up for free idea on how to create your own Race for Life at Home challenge, and use the hashtag #RaceForLifeAtHome to share your photos and videos.