Mum praised by Prime Minister for tireless fundraising work following death of her son
BYSONIA SHARMA Chronicle Live
Devoted and defiant mum Lynn Lucas has raised a fortune for cancer research since the tragically early death of her son Chris aged 15 in 2000
Lynn Lucas has been raising funds for research into childhood cancer ever since her son Chris died 16 years ago.
A dedicated mum has been praised by the Prime Minister for her tireless fundraising work following the death of her son from a rare and aggressive form of childhood cancer.
Theresa May has honoured Lynn Lucas with a Point of Light award as she continues her fight to find a cure for rhabdomyosarcoma.
Lynn’s son, Chris, died in 2000 - three years after being diagnosed with the disease. He was just 18-years-old.
After his death, his heartbroken parents, of Hadrian Park, Wallsend, set up the Chris Lucas Trust and have since raised around £2m, which goes towards the Institute for Cancer Research and directly supports the work of two senior researchers.
Prime Minister Theresa May told Lynn: “Your fundraising efforts are making a vital contribution to research into sarcoma. Your important work through the Chris Lucas Memorial Fund is a wonderful tribute to the memory of your son.”
Lynn, whose husband is also called Lynn, said: “I am shocked and honoured to have been chosen for this award. I want to share this with my husband as this has become our life, both during Christopher’s illness and since his death.
“We have worked together to raise enough funds to pay the salaries of two scientific medical researchers based at ICR London for over 12 years. This award will help lift the profile of our charity and will help to create more awareness of the condition, as we are the only charity doing this for rhabdomyosarcoma.”
She said the couple still think of Chris everyday and he was especially missed at their younger son David’s wedding last year. But they try to think positively and hope to make a difference.
She added: “Chris would have been 35-years-old this month. I still have pictures of him all over my wall and often get upset looking at them. Sometimes people ask ‘isn’t it time to take the pictures down?’ and I say no.
“I always have mixed emotions. When David got married, it was beautiful. But at the same time we thought Chris should have been there, he should’ve been the best man.
Lynn Lucas at the finish of the Great North Bike Ride in aid of the Chris Lucas Trust
“Now I am going to be a granny in April, I’m excited and I can’t wait. But I also think Chris would have been a lovely uncle.
“Even though it has been 16 years since he died, it’s still very hard, it hurts and I cry. But we try to turn all the negatives into positives, and we are putting all our efforts into fundraising.”
The charity raises cash through various events - the biggest one is the annual Great North Bike Ride which involves hundreds of cyclists riding 60 miles from Seahouses to Tynemouth.
Cyclists tackle Great North Bike Ride from Seahouses to TynemouthThe 60-mile ride was held in memory of teenager Chris Lucas, who died from a rare form of cancer 16 years ago
Next Event: GREAT NORTH BIKE RIDE
Sunday 27th August 2017 www.greatnorthbikeride.com
Professor Janet Shipley and her sarcoma molecular pathology team
Did you know?
Chris Lucas Trust has fundraised £2 million for childhood Rhabdomyosarcoma cancer research?
Chris Lucas Trust employs two Senior Medical Researchers for Rhabdomyosarcoma?
Hopes pinned on gene test
ICR scientists set to conquer Mount Snowdon for research into rare teenage cancer