Determined fundraiser takes on 10k to improve survival rates of pancreatic cancer

Kerry Bird, 44, from Hull is tackling the Lincoln 10k race on the 2nd April to raise vital funds for charity Pancreatic Cancer Action along with her sister Toni and her mum Marilyn. Her father Alan Bird, sadly passed away from pancreatic cancer in June 2016 inspiring her to complete the race which falls on what would have been his birthday.

Alan, 68, had suffered with indigestion before his diagnosis. He started losing weight in October 2015

Happy times. Alan with wife Marilyn centre, and from right daughters Lisa, Kerry, Toni and son Paul.

and his pains were getting more severe which led to him being rushed to A&E in December 2015. Alan’s diagnosis shortly followed on the day of his 45th Sapphire Wedding Anniversary which revealed a side branch pancreatic tumour in the uncinate process and a small metastasis in the liver. Alan started chemotherapy in January 2016 but unfortunately passed away just 6 months after diagnosis on 3rd June 2016 with his family around him.

Kerry says “Dad was a real loving, family man who had a passion for rugby. He was very much involved in the local community and he, along with the Sutton Trust committee helped to secure a large lottery grant and funds from William Sutton Trust estate to build a brand new clubhouse and dry pitch. This helped get children, youths and adults into the sport and off the streets and the club as a whole really took off.”

Alan with some of the players and friends at the Sutton Trust Rugby club.

“We as a family would like to stress how horrified we were when we discovered that pancreatic cancer is the least funded of all cancers yet has one of the highest morbidity/survival rates which, we have learnt has not changed in almost 40 years. We all feel that more just has to be done!”

Pancreatic Cancer Action is committed to working towards earlier diagnosis of the disease so that surgery, currently the only cure, is made available to the sufferer.  The charity fund research into early diagnosis, provide medical education programmes, and launch awareness campaigns.

Ali Stunt, Founder of Pancreatic Cancer Action, said: “We are delighted that Kerry is giving her time to take on this challenge and support Pancreatic Cancer Action.  Alan’s symptoms were very similar to most with pancreatic cancer and this is a great way to turn this sad story into something positive.

”We rely solely on donations from the public and thanks to people like Kerry we can continue our vital work. Please back her in her fundraising efforts so that we can continue research into early diagnosis and raise awareness of pancreatic cancer.”

To sponsor Kelly and read more about her story please visit her Just Giving page https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Kerry-Bird3