A Scalford woman who was recently given the all-clear following cancer treatement says she was ‘absolutely overwhelmed’ to be asked to host this year’s LOROS Twilight Walk which last year raised more than £100,000 to support sufferers at the Leicestershire hospice.
Emma Agnew, wife of the BBC Test Match Special cricket commentator, Jonathan, will lead a record-breaking 3,000 women in walking 10km around Leicester city centre at 5.30pm on Saturday.
The 53-year-old BBC East Midlands Today editor will be joined on the walk by her daughter, Charlotte Dodds, and sister, Victoria, as well as her close friend and television colleague, presenter Anne Davies, who is patron of LOROS.
Emma said: “I was absolutely overwhelmed when I was asked to host the Twilight Walk.
“And we’ll be joined by a load of people, who all are united together, and who have one thing in common and feel so passionately about LOROS.
“I am so lucky to be able to be doing it and I really feel that.”
She has a particular connection to the hospice because it cared for her father, Chris Norris, in the final years of his life over 10 years ago.
“LOROS helped dad live,” said Emma, who recently joined her husband on stage at Melton Theatre at a fundraising event where she talked both poignantly and humorously about her battle with cancer.
“Dad fought like cat and dog not to go into LOROS but was eventually persuaded to go in.
“Once he was in though, it was an eye opener for all of us and dad grew to love the place.
“Support from the team at LOROS meant that he could get back into work, even though he was poorly and that was everything to dad; being back at work kept dad alive.
“LOROS helped give dad that sense of normality again at a time of his life that was anything but normal.”
Chris, who was initially diagnosed with prostate cancer but later found out it had spread to his bones, died at LOROS after several years under their care.
Seeing the care her dad received from LOROS meant that Emma didn’t fear the Hospice when she was diagnosed with cancer herself.
“I trusted LOROS and dad did, which was so reassuring,” she said.
“I knew that if I ever needed them, LOROS would be there.”
One year ago, the idea of walking 10km round Leicester seemed like something Emma could only dream about having recently been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Although Emma never needed the care from the hospice herself, she feels that hosting and taking part in the Twilight Walk is her way of giving something back for the support her dad got.
“I remember walking out of Glenfield Hospital, totally shocked and saying to Jonathan, promise me that if I need it, you’ll get me into LOROS.
“One of the things I remember when we first went to LOROS and there was just so much laughter.”
This year’s Twilight Walk is sold out with 3,000 participants taking part but there are opportunities to volunteer to help on the day.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to get involved in a volunteering capacity.