A Half Marathon is a serious achievement by any standard but one Tallaght man is raising the bar this year. James Lumumba will be running the entire Dublin Half Marathon backwards. Backwards running can be known to reduce the normal strains of forward running however it is also physically, mentally and logistically demanding due to uneven roads and potholes.
James explains that he and seven friends, who will be running the race normally, are taking part in order to help raise money for their pal Brian Slattery who has been diagnosed with Metastatic Colorectal Cancer.
He told us “Since the diagnosis Brian has been nothing less than a superhero in his battle with this dreadful disease. His positive attitude and wonderful sense of humour has carried him through the most heartbreaking of days – somehow even managing to make it easier for those around him come to terms with his diagnosis.”
“Brian spent the Summer having radiation and chemotherapy followed by a bowel resection surgery to remove the tumour. The surgery went well and the prognosis seemed positive. We were so glad to see the back of 2016.”
“However early this year Brian began to show signs that the cancer had returned. We soon learned that the cancer had spread to other areas of his body such as close to the spine, and the liver. Brian is now receiving chemotherapy. However, his Oncology Consultant has informed us that this chemotherapy is the last resort and will not actually make Brian better – but will perhaps give him some more time in this horrendous battle. With such little hope, Brian is doing his utmost to stay positive.”
“The Consultant told us that there is one drug available (but not yet approved by the HSE in Ireland) which is optimal for Brian’s survival. This drug is called Pembrolizumab. Unfortunately, the drug trial for treatment of rectal cancer using this drug has just closed. The outcome from the research has been exceptionally promising in rectal cancer and it would be very beneficial to Brian’s full recovery from Cancer.”
“Access to this drug could cost Brian anywhere in the region of €70k – €140k plus, depending on the length of treatment required. Therefore, it is with great urgency that we appeal to you to make a donation towards Brian’s recovery. He needs this drug now.”
If you would like to support James and his friends in their fundraising for Brian you can donate through the GoFundMe page here https://www.gofundme.com/running4brian