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Marathon man tackles third run for charity

Marathon man tackles third run for charity

10 April 2012

A corporate financier from Titchfield, near Portsmouth, is tackling his third marathon in a bid to help beat one of the world’s deadliest cancers.

David Hignell, 31, is currently training hard for this year’s Virgin London Marathon on 22 April, and hopes to raise at least £2,000 for the Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund (PCRF), after losing his father Dennis to the disease in March 2011.

Previously David has run marathons in New York and London to support the British Heart Foundation after his father underwent a heart by-pass operation in 2005.

“My father passed away just over a year ago,” says David. “I was already aware of pancreatic cancer and how quickly it can spread because we lost a close family friend to the disease while I was growing up.”

“My father’s illness was diagnosed in October 2010, a month after his 80th birthday. Looking back, some of the warning signs were there, but he just thought he’d get over them. He was always full of life and optimism and fought valiantly after the cancer was diagnosed, but this is a particularly evil cancer that sadly very few people beat.”

Some 8,000 people are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer each year in the UK.  It has the worst five year survival rate of any cancer – just three per cent – a figure that has not improved in forty years.  Despite being the fifth most common cause of cancer death in the UK, pancreatic cancer receives less than two per cent of overall research funding.

“This disease has claimed the lives of some high profile people, including Apple CEO Steve Jobs and the actor Patrick Swayze,” says David. “But the disease still has a low profile and research is really under-resourced. I’m hoping that by supporting the PCRF I’ll be doing my bit to raise awareness of this disease and give people who are diagnosed with it a better chance in the future.”

Donations to David’s appeal can be made at www.justgiving.com/DavidHignell2012 .

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