THREE determined ladies are teaming up to walk a nighttime marathon in honour of their courageous sister who is battling cervical and ovarian cancer at the age of 20.
Rhyanne Griffiths was diagnosed with cervical cancer in May last year after almost a decade of being “fobbed off” by doctors.
By the time the cancer was detected, it had spread to her ovaries. It’s now also spread to one of her kidneys.
Rhyanne has been through chemotherapy and had several operations to remove tumours, but she says: “Every time they seem to be able to treat the cancer, they find it has spread to somewhere else.”
Inspired by her bravery, Rhyanne’s sisters Kelly, 37, and Kara, 28, and her sister-in-law Hayley, 27, all from Laindon, have signed up for the September 27 Shine Night Walk, in London, which will raise money for Cancer Research.
Rhyanne said: “I’m so proud of my sisters and Hayley for doing this. Cancer Research is such an amazing charity.
“The thing with cancer is even if you get over it, you’re never going to be the person you once were.
“It takes so much out of you.
Whatever happens to me, to know they are doing this and helping to find a cure to help others means so much.”
Rhyanne, who married her boyfriend Josh last year, says she had been going to the GP since she was nine with symptoms which were put down to heavy and painful periods, but never followed up with screening treatments.
It wasn’t until she moved to Chelmsford and saw a new GP that she was given a smear test which led to the cervical cancer being detected.
She said: “I am really angry. I go from being upset to angry that I was just brushed off for so many years.
“I knew something was wrong, but it was never taken seriously. I remember one direct quote from a male doctor who told me ‘this is something women just have to live with’.”
The Shine Night Walk sees fundraisers from all over the UK following an after-dark route, walking past many of the capital’s landmarks.
Rhyanne, who is still undergoing chemotherapy, will be heading up to London to watch her sisters – if she feels well enough.
Kelly said: “Rhyanne is amazing in the way she has never wallowed, despite what she has had to cope with at such a young age.
“It’s hard to see her going through chemo, but we are a close family.
“Our mum, Evelyn, has severe sight problems, but she’s never wallowed either and is always out raising money and thinking of others. I think that’s where Rhyanne gets it from.”
! If you can help visit with sponsorship visit: www.justgiving.com/Hayley Griffiths2014 www.justgiving.com/Kara Griffiths2014 www.justgiving.com/Kelly Griffiths77