One-year-old Jacob Hughes, who suffers from a rare form of cancer and is currently undergoing chemotherapy, with his dad Luke
The London Marathon is more than six months away, but it’s already looming large for one Sheerness man.
Luke Hughes from Granville Road is to make his long-distance debut to raise money for CLIC Sargent, the charity that supports youngsters with cancer.
It’s a cause that runs deep with the dad of two, as his son, Jacob, has been diagnosed with a rare form of the disease.
The one-year-old suffers from rhabdomyosarcoma,which affects fewer than 60 children in the UK each year.
It caused a tumour that meant Jacob had to have his bladder removed in July.
He’s currently undergoing chemotherapy, involving monthly trips to London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital.
An MRI scan in two weeks will reveal how successful the treatment has been.
Luke, 23, who has given up work to join his son on his medical visits, said he needed to raise £1,850 to take part in next April’s run, but hoped to collect more.
He said: “I’d like to be able to donate about £2,000 to the charity. It’s my first marathon, and my last as well if it kills me.
“But Jacob means everything to me and I can’t describe how heartbreaking it is to see how ill he looks when I pick him up.
“His condition means he looks six months younger than he is, but he’s a happy little baby and just gets on with it.”
Luke, who also has a two-year-old child, Harry, and is separated from his boys’ mum, Yasmin, said he was due to start a job in his native Ellesmere Port in December.
But a call saying Jacob had been rushed to hospital prompted a swift return to Sheppey, where he intends to stay to support his sick son.
Jacob was born with the condition, which normally affects boys younger than 10, but it wasn’t diagnosed until he reached five months.
It means he is unable to walk or talk.
As well as running the marathon, Luke is appealing for Island businesses to donate prizes and to help with venues for future fundraising events.
He said: “Jacob’s gone through more in his little life than
some adults will go through in a lifetime.
“All we’re worried about is him getting better.”
- To sponsor Luke, visit: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/LukeHughes-ClicSargent