Worthing building to be lit up purple for pancreatic cancer awareness day
Melanie Tyerman, who lost two loved ones to the cruel disease, requested that a landmark be lit for pancreatic cancer awareness day on Thursday, November 16.
"I have heard from the council that they are going to light up the town hall,” Melaine said. “I am so happy.
“My dad died of pancreatic cancer in 2008 and my stepdad died of the same thing in 2019.
“There will be a lot of tears when it happens. It’s very close to my heart.”
Melanie is a representative of the Pancreatic Cancer Action group, which is running a national campaign to light up UK landmarks.
Melanie had initially requested that Worthing Pier was lit before being told the town hall had been chosen.
“What an incredible beacon of hope it would be to the thousands of people in the UK who are suffering daily with this disease,” she said.
"If, by doing this, one more person is made aware of pancreatic cancer, then our job is done. Through awareness we literally save lives.”
The Rustington resident, who has spent time living in Ghana, has completed multiple fundraising challenges ‘raise awareness for this horrific disease’.
These activities have included: running the London Marathon three times; taking on two solo camping trips around the country; braving Europe’s fastest zip line in Wales – which reaches 100 miles an hour – as well as a tandem skydive.
“The first camping goal was to drive 2,600 miles along the coastline of the UK,” Melanie explained. “The second goal was to camp in 26 campsites around the country.
“I am pretty much willing to do anything I can to fundraise and create as much awareness as possible.”
Melanie said she was inspired by her dad who also ran marathons – including the London marathon twice.
She said her fundraising efforts are ‘not only in memory of my dad and stepdad’ – but for ‘all the people that have been lost, who are suffering and all the family members that also live with this everyday’.
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Pancreatic Cancer Action is a UK charity registered in England and Wales.
The charity said early diagnosis of pancreatic cancer is ‘key to improving survival rates’, adding: “We are dedicated to saving lives by improving early diagnosis and improving the quality of survival for men and women diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the UK.
“We fund research into early diagnostic techniques, create award winning awareness campaigns, produce resources for medical professionals and produce vital patient information.
"Founded by a rare survivor, Ali Stunt, in 2010, our vision is a day where more people survive pancreatic cancer than die from it.”
Nearly 10,000 men and women are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer every year in the UK and sadly, in the last 50 years, survival rates have barely improved. Today, just five per cent of people of those diagnosed with pancreatic cancer will survive beyond five years.
"However, if patients are diagnosed in time for surgery, they have six times more chance of surviving pancreatic cancer,” the charity said.
"Pancreatic Cancer Action relies solely on the generosity of the general public for all its funding. We do not receive a penny of government funding.
“If you have any queries, please contact the Pancreatic Cancer Action Fundraising Team on 0303 040 1770 or email [email protected].”