Friend’s brain tumour death inspires swimming challenge
A father and daughter have made a splash at a swimming challenge to help scientists searching for a brain tumour cure.
Alice Whale, 27, who lives in Bristol, had a whale of a time at the 10km swim with her dad, Spud Whale, from Greenwich, on Sunday 16th September. They were motivated by the loss of their family friend, Glenn McMahon, who died in 2015, just two years after his diagnosis.
Glenn, from Mottingham, was diagnosed with a glioblastoma – an aggressive type of brain tumour – after suffering from co-ordination problems. He underwent radiotherapy and chemotherapy but passed away aged 53, leaving his wife Wendy. Wendy has worked tirelessly to increase awareness of brain tumours and set up a Fundraising Group, the Glenn McMahon Foundation, which was set up under the umbrella of the Brain Tumour Research charity to help find a cure for brain tumours.
Alice, a content manager, and Spud, a 54-year-old co-ordinator for EDF Energy, dipped their toes in the 10km swim along the Dart River from Totnes to Dittisham and raised over £700 for the Brain Tumour Research charity.
Alice said: “Dad and I both felt quite nervous about the swim but we were proud to raise money for this vital cause. We were glad to have crossed the finish line before the tide came in and had a great time on the day. Glenn was an awesome guy and a close friend of the Whale family. We are proud to help Wendy on her mission and raise as much as possible for Brain Tumour Research.”
Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age. What’s more, they kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer, yet just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.
Michael Thelwall, Head of Community Fundraising at Brain Tumour Research, said: “For too long, brain tumours have been a neglected cancer and stories like Glenn’s remind us all that we cannot allow this desperate situation to continue. Sadly, less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers.
“We are very grateful to Alice and Spud and congratulate them on completing their swim. The money raised on the day will help Brain Tumour Research in our efforts to find a cure for this devastating disease.”
To donate to Brain Tumour Research via Alice’s JustGiving page visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Whales-Swim-10k
For further information, please contact:
Annie Slinn at the Brain Tumour Research charity on 01908 867239 or 07591 206545 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notes to Editors
Brain Tumour Research is the only national charity in the UK dedicated to raising funds for continuous and sustainable scientific research into brain tumours, and we are a leading voice calling for greater support and action for research into what scientists are calling the last battleground against cancer.
We are building a network of experts in sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence whilst influencing the Government and larger cancer charities to invest more nationally.
We welcome recent funding announcements for research into brain tumours from the UK Government and Cancer Research UK – £65 million pledged over the next five years. However, this potential funding of £13 million a year comes with a catch – money will only be granted to quality research proposals and, due to the historic lack of investment, there may not be enough of these applications that qualify for grants from this pot.
We want research funding parity with breast cancer and leukaemia. We are calling for a £30-35 million investment every year for research into brain tumours in order to fund the basic research groundwork needed to accelerate the translation from laboratory discoveries into clinical trials and fast-track new therapies for this devastating disease.
The Brain Tumour Research charity is a powerful campaigning organisation and represents the voice of the brain tumour community across the UK. We helped establish and provide the ongoing Secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group for Brain Tumours (APPGBT). We are supporting the crucial APPGBT 2018 Inquiry into the economic and social impacts of brain tumours and will publish their report in the autumn. We are also a key influencer in the development strategy for the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission.
Key statistics on brain tumours:
- Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age
- Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer
- Just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours
- In the UK, 16,000 people each year are diagnosed with a brain tumour
- Brain tumours kill more children than leukaemia
- Brain tumours kill more men under 45 than prostate cancer
- Brain tumours kill more women under 35 than breast cancer
- Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers
Please quote Brain Tumour Research as the source when using this information. Additional facts and statistics are available from our website. We can also provide case studies and research expertise for the media.