A GRIEVING daughter who ran the race of her life after her mum died from cancer says our appeal to fund new state-of-the-art radiotherapy machine will be a "godsend" to patients suffering the devastating disease.
Katie Porter paid an emotional tribute to her mother Julie on Friday when she visited the Royal Berkshire Hospital's Berkshire Cancer Centre to present staff with £3,000 towards our Accelerator Appeal.
The campaign, run in partnership with the Royal Berkshire Charity, aims to raise £100,000 towards the centre's fifth Linear Accelerator (Linac) - a high-tech machine using highly accurate radiation beams to destroy cancerous tumours.
Katie, from Forest Park, Bracknell, raised the cash after completing her first Bracknell Half Marathon with flatmate Martin Cooper in April, 18 months after Julie, 57, from Crown Wood, who worked as a special needs teacher at Maiden Erlegh School in Earley, lost her battle with spindle cell sarcoma.
Katie, 24, who handed over the cheque wearing a T-shirt bearing her mother's image, said: "The appeal is very close to our hearts, mum had to travel to London for her treatment which was very stressful, but if we can fund clinics closer to home it will be a godsend to patients."
The supermarket duty manager, who works at Tesco Extra in Sandhurst, tackled the 13.1mile course in pouring rain as part of a fitness challenge during which she has shed 8st 7lbs in two years. She added: "Crossing the line was ridiculously emotional. The build up was so intense, it was so cold and wet and we were incredibly fatigued but we knew it was in memory of her. She would be very proud and I know the appeal would be something she would have supported."
She also thanked Tesco colleagues and Maiden Erlegh staff and pupils for their generous support.
The £1m Elekta Compact, the first of its kind in the country, is a smaller version of the hospital's four larger Linacs and will replace an 19-year-old model. Two larger Linacs are already in use at the Royal Berks, a newly constructed one is coming online this month and there is another at the Royal Berkshire Bracknell Clinic.
To donate contact 0118 322 6969 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Donors can also text RBCL05 to 70070 followed by any amount from £1 to £10, agreeing to gift aid if applicable.
People can also send cheques addressed to 'The Royal Berks Charity Accelerator Fund' to Accelerator Appeal Royal Berks Charity, FREEPOST RLRJ-XCXE-XCZH, Royal Berkshire Hospital, London Road, Reading RG1 5AN.