July 3rd 2020 - UKMA Virtual Action Mesothelioma Day
Our Trustee Paul Cook describes his mesothelioma journey so far and talks about plans for Action Mesothelioma Day 2021.
Nicky Runs Marathon in Tribute to Mesowarrior Best Friend
Introducing Professor Mary O'Brien,
Erase Meso Head of Advisory Board.
Professor Mary O'Brien is a well know thoracic medical oncologist with a vast experience of research and over 250 publications.
She has a long interest in mesothelioma and has been
involved in some of the earliest randomised studies.
She comes to the advisory board with enthusiasm and knowledge.
‘The challenge is great, and so should be the effort in research at this point’.
‘Long years of difficult research is now delivering new approaches and treatments that will make a difference to our patients –
we want to influence and be part of this’.
We are absolutely thrilled that you’ve decided to run the London Marathon for Erase Meso.
What prompted you to do this?
I ran my first marathon (Paris) last year and ran for Mesothelioma UK. My friend from university days had been diagnosed with Mesothelioma in 2017 and I wanted to do something to help raise funds for research. During the year Erase Meso started following me on Instagram and I liked your story and ethos - hence me choosing to raise funds for you this time around!
Can you tell us a bit more about Katherine.. What was she like?
When was she diagnosed, at what age.. and what was her experience..?
Katherine was an amazing friend and an inspirational lady. Always smiling, always hopeful. She had had a sarcoma in her leg several years ago and so was scanned from time to time due to this. She was feeling absolutely fine but at a scan, something was noted on her lung. Further testing revealed mesothelioma. It was devastating - even more so once we all knew how awful this disease is. (To be completely honest, I’d never heard of it until Katherine’s diagnosis). Katherine was 47 when she was diagnosed. She endured two rounds of chemotherapy and a pleurectomy. She was so brave throughout and so positive but sadly she died 2 years after diagnosis.
How do you think she’d feel about you doing this for meso research funds?
She’d be thrilled and proud (and probably think I was mad due to how hard I found it last time!)
If there was one piece of advice you think she’d give you for the run, what do you think it would be?
(And back to you, Nicky..)
What’s your background?
Well I’ve always been sporty but wouldn’t have called myself a runner - before training for the marathon I was definitely more of a gym bunny - but I’ve learned to love it. For work, I’ve always been in PR/marketing and I currently run my own company, working with clients from mainly health and beauty industries. (In fact, Katherine’s daughter worked with me for some time and we both ran a half marathon together last year to raise money for mesothelioma research).
How’s the training going.. and how do you motivate yourself??
Training is going well. I have two lovely friends I run with and my gorgeous dog, Ted! They keep me motivated and of course having the ability to complete the marathon keeps me motivated. I HAVE TO do this!
What hurdles will you face over the 26 miles?
Despite all the other runners around me, running without anyone to talk to can be hard - it can feel very lonely! Obviously there will be physical pain and tiredness and the dreaded “wall” and of course, there’ll be the sadness that Katherine is gone, but i know she’ll be smiling down cheering me on
How will you feel when you finish?
Absolutely thrilled and relieved.
What do you want to result from your challenge?
I want to raise more awareness of mesothelioma and as much money as possible for Erase Meso.
We are thrilled to hit our target before Christmas. Thanks to everyone for your time, help, brains, monetary donations and energy!!
We are always in need of volunteers. If you have any marketing experience and can offer some time, we would love to hear from you. Likewise, we desperately need more help with events organisation for #teamerasemeso.
Please contact if you are interested to hear more..