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Race for Life Kirkcaldy: Fife breast cancer survivor calls on others to ‘help raise funds for my future’

The whole family is taking part in Race for Life in Kirkcaldy
Lesley-Ann with Richard, Crawford and Blaire.

A Fife playgroup worker will be guest of honour at Race for Life in Kirkcaldy next month – two years after she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Lesley-Ann Chessor from Crossford will take part in the 5k at Beveridge Park on May 15 to help fund research into the disease.

And she will be joined by husband Richard and children Blaire,7, and Crawford, 9, who supported her through months of treatment.

Lesley-Ann and daughter Blaire will Race for Life in Kirkcaldy.

Lesley-Ann found out she had cancer on March 20 2020, the day before the UK went into lockdown.

And as she went to pick up her children from school and say goodbye to the playgroup youngsters, the 39-year-old was in a daze.

“There was so much going on, it didn’t really hit me,” she said.

Since then she has had a mastectomy and an operation to remove lymph nodes.

And she has had eight rounds of chemotherapy, as well as 15 rounds of radiotherapy.

Lesley-Ann says she knows exactly how vital it is to raise funds for life-saving research.

And she is encouraging everyone to sign up for Race for Life in Kirkcaldy.

Diagnosis and treatment during lockdown

Because of lockdown rules, Lesley-Ann had to tell her parents over the phone she had stage three breast cancer that had spread to her lymph nodes.

Altogether, there were five tumours and she had to go for treatment on her own.

As she juggled with home schooling Blaire and Crawford, who were then in P1 and P3, she didn’t have time to think.

“I think being in lockdown helped me to deal with the cancer emotionally,” she said.

“I didn’t see how anyone else was reacting to my diagnosis because it was just me, my husband Richard and the children in our world.

Lesley-Ann’s treatment wasn’t entirely straightforward.

Consultations often took place over the phone or while she was on her own in hospital.

But despite pandemic-related safety measures, she feels she was given the best care.

“I don’t feel my treatment was delayed in any way,” she said.

“I think it was a time that the hospitals were only dealing with emergencies.

“Because my situation was considered to be fairly urgent, it was seen pretty quickly.

“The only difference in my treatment plan, as I understand it, is that I’ve had to wait for reconstruction surgery. I’m expecting this to happen soon.”

‘I’m so proud to Race for Life’

Lesley-Ann celebrated her 40th birthday earlier this year and is now looking forward to enjoying time with her loved ones.

She said: “I’m so proud to Race for Life.

“Taking part, raising funds, encouraging others to get involved is so important – it could be priceless for us in the future.

A previous Race for Life Kirkcaldy
A previous Race for Life in Kirkcaldy.

“We all have a reason to Race for Life. For me it will be a moment to celebrate being clear of cancer and to play my part to fund research to help future generations.”

Linda Summerhayes, Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson in Scotland, said: “We are incredibly grateful to Lesley-Ann and her family for their support and we’re excited about welcoming them to the event in Kirkcaldy.

“Sadly, cancer affects all of us in some way.

“Whether people are living with cancer, taking part in honour of or in memory of a loved one with cancer or signing up to protect their children’s future, everyone has a reason to Race for Life.”

Race for Life in Kirkcaldy has 10k, 5k and 3k races.

And there are Pretty Muddy events for adults and kids.

You can sign up here.

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