Emma Kilby, Technical Area Sales Manager for ICL, has beaten three types of cancer and conquered the London Marathon, raising more than £3,000 for Children with Cancer UK.
Emma’s battle with cancer started when she was 16. She was diagnosed with cancer on two other occasions, but after a long and difficult battle, enduring months of operations, chemotherapy and radioactive iodine, she pulled through. Her struggle with the disease didn’t allow it to get in the way of life, and she finished her studies at university, got married and has two daughters.
Emma wanted to give something back, and decided to run the London Marathon to raise funds for Children with Cancer UK.
Almost 4,000 children and young people are diagnosed with cancer every year in the UK. That’s ten every day. Children with Cancer UK is the national children’s charity dedicated to the fight against childhood cancer. It funds life-saving research into the causes, prevention and treatment of childhood cancer, and works to protect young lives through essential welfare programmes.
The 2018 London Marathon was the hottest on record, and Emma ran the 26.2-mile race in temperatures of 24.1C, and recorded a time of 5 ½ hours.
“I’ve been training for 16 weeks and we trained in extremely cold weather conditions,” said Emma. “Nothing prepares you for the heat we were running in on Sunday, but I never felt that I was going to quit. It just wasn’t an option. The spirit of the day was indescribable, as is the pain that accompanies it. The crowd and the adrenaline really help you to cross the finish line. For me, it was a personal challenge and a mental challenge too because it has been on my bucket list ever since I was ill. There were times when I wasn’t even able to walk from all the treatment I was receiving so for me to be able to run a marathon was a huge, emotional achievement. It has taken its toll though! I’ve been extremely tired and I haven’t been able to eat properly since the race. It takes a mile per day for your body to recuperate so it will take about a month to totally recover.”
Emma is now back to work after raising £3,300 for Children with Cancer UK. and says she is overwhelmed with the amount of support: “I got to the finish line and had over 120 messages on my phone from people within the industry and from friends and family. I just want to say a really massive thank you to everybody for all of their support and generosity, because it would not have been possible without them. It is unbelievable to see the amount of money that I have raised so far for such a great charity. It was a privilege to run for CWCUK, which is close to my heart, and it is good to know that this money will help the charity to determine the causes, find new cures and provide care for children with cancer.”