Chris Carberry, a 21-year-old from Rainford, St Helens, who lost a leg to bone cancer last year and had a third of his lung removed in July after his cancer returned has successfully completed a huge challenge.
From 30th September to 1st October he hand-cycled over 40 miles of Hadrian’s Wall alongside 31 friends and family members.
The group exceeded their target of raising £4,000 in sponsorship which will be split between the children and young people’s cancer support charity CLIC Sargent, and Chris’s fund for new prosthetic legs that will help him continue playing the sports that he loves.
Chris tackled the gruelling course on a hand-bike as he wasn’t able to walk, due to the difficulty of walking on a prosthetic leg, and his stamina being affected by his recent operation.
Sports-mad and super fit Chris was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in 2015 aged 19 and intensive chemotherapy and immunotherapy followed. But instead of shrinking it, the tumour actually grew, and in April 2016 he made the difficult decision to have his leg amputated.
After further treatment he got the all clear in January this year and started planning the Hadrian’s Wall Challenge.
But in July, a routine scan found a shadow on Chris’s lung. The cancer had spread and a third of his lung was removed. Despite experiencing breathlessness Chris was undeterred, and he was back in training for his challenge just weeks later. Just 11 weeks on from having lung surgery, he’s now achieved the seemingly impossible for someone in his position.
Chris said “Some of the hills were massive, and at one point I had to get off the hand-bike and push it up a hill which had an incline of 14%!”
“It was an incredible journey, a defining moment in my battle and something I’ll be forever proud of.”
Chris’s dad, Stephen Carberry, said “Though it was a mammoth challenge for Chris with having lung surgery not that long ago, it doesn’t really surprise me that he has accomplished what he did at Hadrian’s Wall.”
“If he puts his mind to something, he always seems to pull it off. I don’t know how, but he did.”
“The whole family and I couldn’t be prouder.’’
Chris added ‘’It’s been a few months now since I finished treatment, so I just wanted to get back out there and continue my active lifestyle. I felt I needed to show everyone that having cancer or losing a leg doesn’t spell the end of an active lifestyle. Challenges like Hadrian’s Wall can be tough –very tough – but they’re still doable with the right support.”
Chris now blogs and delivers public speeches about the challenges he’s faced through cancer and hopes to ‘inspire people as countless others have before me’.
To sponsor Chris retrospectively please visit: https://www.gofundme.com/tnsfc-hadrians-wall-charity-walk
Chris’s blog: http://chriscarberry.co.uk