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Couple plans Calliope-Gladstone walk for cancer

IN TRAINING: Sandra and Malcolm Cusack get ready for their 60km walk.
IN TRAINING: Sandra and Malcolm Cusack get ready for their 60km walk. Mike Richards

HAVE you ever considered walking from Gladstone to Calliope and back again?

The distance seems impossible, yet Malcolm and Sandra Cusack have taken up the challenge without a second thought.

Mrs Cusack said a tumultuous personal journey inspired her to participate in this year's Weekend to End Women's Cancer.

"In 2009 I was diagnosed with breast cancer and had a mastectomy and chemotherapy treatment," she said.

"A few months later my mum was also diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent surgery and treatment.

"Sadly, last May, my eldest of four sisters passed away at the age of 56 after battling cancer for 18 months.

"Just this past weekend, a dear friend of ours also passed away, having fought leukemia, breast cancer and lung cancer."

Mrs Cusack said neither she nor her husband wanted to see other women, family or not, have to endure the pain and suffering of a cancer diagnosis.

"I am still alive five years after diagnosis and felt it was time to give something back to help aid research, in the hope that others will be spared the heartache that our family and many others have suffered," she said.

"It is often harder for the partner and families to watch the person going through cancer and not being able to do much to help.

"(Malcolm) has dedicated his walk to our friend who passed away."

The couple is training hard to physically prepare for the challenge.

"Mentally, raising the funds for such a good cause motivates us to keep going," Mrs Cusack said.

The couple is seeking the community's help to raise $5500 before they depart on the 60km walk in October.

Support the Cusacks by searching for their names on http://www.endcancer.org.au.

Topics:  calliope, cancer, fundraising, gladstone, walk




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