Newbridge cancer survivor Amy Mahon to represent Ireland at European Relay for Life

A voice for Ireland

Niamh O'Donoghue

Reporter:

Niamh O'Donoghue

Email:

niamh.odonoghue@leinsterleader.ie

Newbridge cancer survivor Amy Mahon to represent Ireland at European Relay for Life

Amy and her son Danton

Newbridge cancer survivor, Amy Mahon will be representing Ireland along with a girl from Cork at this year’s European Relay For Life conference in Amsterdam.

This runs from October 18 to 20. 

“This is a huge honour for Amy and indeed for Relay Kildare. She is a cancer survivor at a very young age and has been Survivors Chair at Relay Kildare for the past two years,” said Kildare Relay committee member, Peter O’Neill.

“I cannot wait. I am so excited. I love Relay. I am so invested in it as a survivor and as a committee member. We probably won’t see a cancer free future for my son Danton’s generation, but maybe his generation’s children will experience life without cancer,” said Amy.

Back in February, Amy was named Irish ‘Global Hero of Hope’ to mark World Cancer Day. Heroes of Hope are cancer survivors who inspire hope, courage and determination in the fight against cancer.

She was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2012 aged 29. Two years previously she was diagnosed with a borderline underactive thyroid and by the time her cancer was discovered it had spread to her lymph nodes. She had her thyroid removed and radioactive iodine treatment.

This required the single mum to be in isolation for five days, away from her five-year-old son. She spent a further 10 days in semi-isolation at home. She is now five years cancer free but the removal of her thyroid has resulted in lasting complications.

Despite this, the nail and lash technician is determined to live her life to the full.

Amy was supported by the Irish Cancer Society during her treatment and as a result got involved in the Society’s Relay For Life, Kildare. Relay for Life is a county event, which has been held at Punchestown Racecourse for the past two years.

Cancer survivors, and families affected by cancer come together to raise awareness about the disease as well as raising funds for the Irish Cancer Society. Each team has a representative walking the route for the 24 hours, however this had to be cut short this year due to bad weather. The Candle of Hope ceremony is the main highlight of the event as families remember those who have lost their cancer fight, and those who are continuing their own battle.

She said she can’t wait to meet other Relay representatives from other countries to learn about their how they run Relay.

"I love meeting new people and hearing their stories. I just can't wait," added Amy.