Torquay dad defies hip condition to take on Plymouth Half Marathon
A dad-of-three from Torquay is set to run the Plymouth Half Marathon despite a hip condition that has plagued him since his teens.
Jon Woodmore discovered he had Perthes Disease at the age of 17 when severe pain in his hips prevented him from boxing. The condition affects blood supply to the hips, causing persistent pain and eventually restricting movement. Jon, who is now 52, has had two hip replacements to repair the damage and is now challenging himself to complete the 13.1-mile race and raise money for pioneering charity Brain Tumour Research.
His run is inspired by his wife’s brother, Keith Harvey, also from Torquay, who was diagnosed with a brain tumour in January 2018 following a series of seizures. Aged only 49, Keith, who works as a healthcare assistant at Torbay Hospital, was told he had a grade four tumour. He had surgery soon after to remove the tumour, however, parts were inoperable and remain highly aggressive. Keith has since undergone radiotherapy and chemotherapy to control the tumour’s growth and he is now awaiting a prognosis.
Jon said: “Keith’s diagnosis has put everything into perspective and inspired me to get out there and do whatever I can. I hated running up until a few months ago and always let my hips hinder me but running has given me a new lease of life. I’ve lost two stone and I’ve even got my sights set on the London Marathon next year.”
On Sunday 20th May, Jon will be pounding the streets of Plymouth alongside thousands of runners. The money he raises will go towards Brain Tumour Research’s network of dedicated Centres of Excellence – including the one at the University of Plymouth – where scientists are focused on improving outcomes for patients and, ultimately, finding a cure.
Jon added: “Keith’s illness has been really hard on everyone that knows him. His wife Michelle and their three kids are finding it especially difficult to come to terms with the fact this disease is life-limiting.
“I want to raise a minimum of £1,000 through the Half Marathon but my ultimate aim is to raise £2,740 and fund a day of research into the disease.”
Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer – and more men under 45 than prostate cancer, yet just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.
Jon, who works as an Aftercare Manager at Kier Group, added: “I first came across Brain Tumour Research when I was working on a job at the University of Plymouth. The charity has a research centre based there and I was really touched seeing all the tiles on the Wall of Hope.”
Emma Cronin, Community Fundraiser for Brain Tumour Research, said: “For too long, brain tumours have been a neglected cancer. They are indiscriminate and they can affect anyone at any age. Stories like Keith’s remind us all that we cannot allow this desperate situation to continue.
“We are extremely grateful to Jon for his support and wish him the best of luck for the event. Together we will find a cure.”
Make a donation to Brain Tumour Research via Jon’s JustGiving page.
For further information, please contact:
Farel Williams at Brain Tumour Research on 01908 867221 or 07592 502708 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors
Brain Tumour Research is the only national charity in the UK focused on funding sustainable research to find a cure for brain tumours. We have established a game-changing network of world-class Research Centres of Excellence in the UK. Embracing passionate member charities nationwide, over £6 million was raised towards research and support during 2017.
We are campaigning to see the national spend on research into brain tumours increased to £30 - £35 million a year, in line with breast cancer and leukaemia. The unprecedented success of our 2015 petition led to the 2016 Westminster Hall debate and Brain Tumour Research taking a leading role in the Government’s Task and Finish Working Group convened to tackle the historic underfunding for research with the report being published in 2018.
Key statistics on brain tumours:
- Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer
- They kill more children than leukaemia
- They kill more men under 45 than prostate cancer
- They kill more women under 35 than breast cancer
- Just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease
- In the UK, 16,000 people each year in the UK are diagnosed with a brain tumour
- Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers
- Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age
- Incidences of and deaths from brain tumours are increasing
Please quote Brain Tumour Research as the source when using this information. Additional facts and statistics are available from our website including our latest Report on National Research Funding. We can also provide case-studies and research expertise for media.