10k run to keep sister’s memory alive

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A DONCASTER woman is putting on her trainers to keep alive the charity appeal started by her sister, who died of cancer nine years ago.

Alexandra Ashton, aged 20, said the memory of her sibling Helen was driving her on during preparations for the Bupa Great Yorkshire Run.

Helen died aged 13, several months after she was diagnosed with a tumor.

But she left a lasting legacy by starting the Helen Ashton Appeal just six weeks before she succumbed to the disease in May 2003.

The appeal has so far raised £175,000 for a number of charities.

Alexandra, of Castlegate, Tickhill, will take on the ten kilometre course in aid of Cancer Research UK.

She said: “Losing a member of your family so young is devastating and it’s hard to put into words the loss that you feel.

“Helen was so courageous.

“She even did a sponsored walk covering seven miles only two days after she had treatment.

“Seeing what she went through and how she coped with it all still inspires me today.

“We have organised sponsored walks in the past and relays, but this is the first time I have done a run at this distance.

She added: “Training has been going well and I’m looking forward to it. I’m just hoping to raise as much money as possible.

“Helen wanted to raise money for charity and did not want to see anyone else go through what we were going through.

“She also wanted to raise awareness of the great work charities do.”

Alexandra, a law student at Nottingham University, said it was the first time she had attempted a 10km run.

The Great Yorkshire Run is in Sheffield on September 2. Email alex_ashton_4@hotmail.com to donate.