A grateful mum who has survived breast cancer against the odds is stepping out next month to say thank you.
Kath Martin, 44, was diagnosed with a particularly aggressive form of cancer seven years ago when she was just 37.
After surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy she was in so much pain that she couldn’t wear the stab-proof vest that she needed to return to her job as a community police officer in London.
And it’s the post-op help she received from the team at the Northchurch-based Hospice Of St Francis that she wants to pay tribute to.
“I developed lymphoedema, which was really uncomfortable,” explains Kath, from Warners End.
“But thanks to an amazing therapeutic massage that I had absolutely no idea hospices could provide, I recovered.
“Eight sessions at the hospice with a lovely specialist nurse helped me enormously.
“Without it, I don’t know how I would have got back into my stab-proof vest and gone back to work.”
Now, the mum-of-two wants to give something back.
She will be taking part in this year’s seventh annual Midnight Walk on Saturday , June 29, and tackling the 11-mile mile route with as many friends and work colleagues as she can collar – stepping out seven years to the day since the mastectomy that saved her life.
“It will be nice to walk without the big boots and all the clobber,” she laughs, hopeful that the five to six miles a day she covers on foot patrol around north London should stand her in good stead for the event.
“It’s just a walk,” she says. “It’s not a marathon against the clock, but at least I’m here to walk. I’m one of the lucky ones. It’s only when something happens to you or someone you know that you realise how important places like The Hospice of St Francis are.
“You never know when you might need them but the more funds they have in place, the brighter the future is for all of us.
“This is my way of saying thank you.”
To sponsor Kath, visit her Just Giving site at www.justgiving.com/Kath-Martin1
And if you’d like to join Kath on the Midnight Walk, the hospice’s biggest fundraiser of the year, as an individual or as part of a group, visit www.stfrancis.org.uk/midnightwalk or call 01442 869555.