Thank you for refusing to give in to cancer

Not many people going through cancer would see themselves as an inspiration, but sometimes, that is exactly what they are.

Most families have at some stage been touched, or rather hurt, in some way by the horrible illness of cancer.

It is extremely painful for those who suffer the disease and devastating for their loved ones who can only stand by and offer support.

We should therefore be thankful for the strong and determined people, many who live across the Border and North East, not satisfied with giving in.

Husband and father Steven Johnson has bravely told his story of finding out he has a rare form of brain cancer.

The Rosewhite man knows he is up for a fight, but is willing to try an experimental drug which could cause side effects such as disorientation, confusion and depression.

Without him jumping in, we may never know if this drug is the right way to fight aggressive cancers like his.

Steven is also lucky to have supportive family by his side, such as wife Margot who has “all the hope and positivity that you can muster”.

But it is not just large organisations with revolutionary drugs making a difference, there is plenty happening close to home.

Wednesday’s announcement of $175,000 to pinpoint cancers of the lungs, oesophagus, stomach and pancreas at the Albury Wodonga Regional Cancer Centre is a positive for many cancer sufferers in this region.

Patients living in such major regional cities should not have to travel 300 kilometres for a diagnosis, especially one which could be hard to take and require the support of family and friends close to home.

Unfortunately, even decisions around services in matters of life and death come down to money.

Congratulations to Albury Wodonga Health for sticking with a campaign for 18 months and everyone in the community who donated money to get the equipment fast-tracked – you have made a massive difference.

It is fitting these two stories of positivity have come to light this week just days before the Border Relay for Life, beginning on Saturday.

To those committing to laps around the oval, you probably do not need inspiration, but you can always look to Steven and the cancer centre for a little bit extra.