Cycle For Leukaemia Charity
A Colchester man whose twin nieces have cancer is cycling 350 miles for charity.
4 year olds Megan and Gracie Garwood who have made national headlines after both being diagnosed with leukaemia.
Four year-old Megan first complained of feeling tired in August 2009 and was rushed straight from routine tests in Colchester to Addenbrookes Hospital, Cambridge where she was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia. Within days her devastated parents Emma and Mark were told their other daughter Gracie also had the potentially fatal disease.
Having spent nine weeks in Addenbrookes getting high dose emergency chemotherapy, the twins both now face a further two years of treatment before the family hopes both girls get the all-clear.
The girls Mum Emma said: "We were reassured that the chances of both girls having Leukaemia were slim but Gracie started to feel unwell at her Grandparents and we took her to be checked when we visited Megan. It was the start of an even worse nightmare and from that day we didn't leave the hospital for nine weeks and it was heartbreaking to see them both so ill.
"Gracie kept saying was 'Mummy, I only came here to visit Megan'."
The girls have both had to endure intensive chemotherapy treatment and Megan had to have major surgery on her back after an infection.
Megan and Gracie's Uncle, Oliver Brock felt the need to do something to help. He said: "The whole family are still in shock really. One week we were enjoying a family barbecue and all the children were playing happily and then suddenly both girls are literally fighting for their lives.
"Emma, Mark and the girls spent the next two months living in one small room in Addenbrookes hospital where Megan and Gracie were basically poisoned right to the very limit in order to fight the Leukaemia; it was a really horrendous experience. Thankfully now, although they both have a very long way to go we have been told that they stand a good chance of making a full recovery.
"Megan and Gracie have been so brave, and as they start their next round of treatment and school, I decided that I wanted to do something positive to help other children and families affected by Leukaemia in the future as I have seen almost first-hand how frightening it is.
"So, on Wednesday, 12 May 2010 I will begin a cycle ride from London and cycle more than 350 miles in four days to arrive in Paris on Sunday, 15 May. I am looking for sponsorship to raise as much money as I can for the charity Children with Leukaemia."