"For you who is reading this, I am sure in some way or another you have been affected by the cruel beast of cancer. Whether it’s your parents, siblings, aunt, uncle, closer friend or maybe yourself, cancer creeps its way into people’s lives and takes you on a journey you wish never on your worst enemy. For me, cancer first introduced itself to me at the age of 3 when my closest uncle was diagnosed.

Too young to understand, my fondest memories shared with my uncle were those when he stayed at our house in his sickest moments. Radiotherapy and chemotherapy robbed him of lucious locks and energy to last the day, amongst many other cruel side effects, but it could never rob him of all his energy, to which he used his last ounces of to kick the footy with me in the back yard or imitate Glen McGrath as he bowled to me. We shared a bond with sport which was unbreakable, leaving a mark on my life which no words can do justice.

Sadly, although his 100% devotion to recovery, he lost his battle in 2006. Being a mad Sydney Swans supporter, I am still convinced the bloods pulled one out of the hat with the 2005 premiership, the happiest I’d ever seen him.

Sadly, in 2018 cancer returned to our lives, this time being my father who was diagnosed with bowel cancer. Being the first day of year 12 for me, it’s amazing how quickly your priorities can flip when faced with cancer and you begin to fully appreciate those around you. He successfully defeated cancers first crack at dad and was in remission for 13 months. But cancer is relentlessly evil and returned as Stage 4 Metastatic Bowel Cancer in late 2019.

Dads’ strength shone through, making his fight look tireless and done with ease, to the point those closest around him took for granted and somewhat got complacent with the challenge at hand that cancer posed. In late 2021, we discovered his treatment is no longer proving effective in stabilising his condition and his cancer was sadly spreading further.

After experiencing first-hand the devastating impact this illness has, and watching him endure many gruelling rounds of chemo, I, along with my closest friends, hoped to do something small to help him and many others around Australia in the same position! We decided to run the Melbourne half marathon, initially with the goal to raise $1500.

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the traction the fundraiser would receive and the support that would flood in from all walks of life. It quickly gained momentum and became something far larger than a run I was doing for my dad, it became a vehicle people could use to show their resistance against cancer, many of whom had been impacted by cancer before in some way.

I am so fortunate I, and my closest friends, were able to play a small role in allowing this to happen.

We smashed our goal and were able to raise $13,694.25. This is an amount I know will go a long way in aiding research and helping the thousands of Australians each year who battle this disease. 

Thank you for taking the time to read my story." ~ Marcel

If you were inspired by Marcel’s fundraising activities and would like to support Bowel Cancer Australia through a community fundraiser get in touch with us through our webform.

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