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Inspirational runner defying the odds to raise money for hospice

9th May 2017

Steve Harrison

A Worcester man is beating all the odds by taking part in two half marathons.

Steve Harrison, aged 52, will run both races – the first on 21 May and the second on 17 September this year – despite having had a brain tumour.

Steve, a former Worcestershire Maths teacher, will be raising money for St Richard’s Hospice, a charity very close to his heart.

The father of two from Warndon Villages said : “I was 48 years old when my brain tumour was diagnosed and removed, and was told that the average life expectancy for people with my type of cancer was just six months.

“I was referred to St Richard’s Hospice by my GP in April 2013; the help and care I received was truly outstanding with home visits, group classes and frequent phone support.  I also benefitted from talking to other people with life-limiting conditions at the group meetings which I found really comforting, informative and uplifting.

“In January of this year I was discharged from the hospice’s care as I was responding well to treatment.  However, it is reassuring to know that I can be referred back at a future point if needed.

“I’ve decided to raise money for St Richard’s this year as a small thank you for the care and kindness they have shown towards me, my family and the countless others in their care.”

Ria Simons, Fundraiser at St Richard’s Hospice said : “Steve is an absolute inspiration!  He has pledged to raise £500 for our care but in the first week he has already achieved 50 per cent of this.  We wish him all the best in his endeavours and look forward to supporting him throughout.”

Steve began running in January 2016 and has no plans to stop.  He said : “Running has become a real passion of mine and helps me to stand up to the cancer that I am living with.  In February 2017 I had a mini stroke and in March a bad reaction to my chemotherapy treatment but – thanks to my two oncologists – I am continuing to train for the races.”

The connection with St Richard’s is a truly family affair as Steve’s son Jack volunteered at the hospice for five years, between 2009 and 2014, when he was at both The Royal Grammar School sixth form in Worcester and at Oxford University.  In typically upbeat fashion, Steve said : “Jack really enjoyed his time at St Richard’s and I of course got to see him on my visits to the hospice for treatment!”

To read Steve’s story and/or sponsor him please visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/steve-harrison9.