Claverdon cancer survivor completed triathlon for charity close to his heart

Will Smith at the Blenheim Triathlon. Photo by George Smith.
Will Smith at the Blenheim Triathlon. Photo by George Smith.

Cancer survivor Will Smith has taken part in a gruelling endurance race to raise hundreds of pounds for a charity which supported him through his toughest times

Will, 22, from Claverdon,completed the Blenheim Palace Triathlon in 1 hour 30 minutes recently.

He was diagnosed with stage four non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma when he was 14 years old, and undertook the challenge to fundraise for Teenage Cancer Trust.

He said: “I was diagnosed with cancer when I was 14, following 10 months of being in an out of hospital and misdiagnoses.

“My cancer treatment went on for exactly two years, which included eight emergency admissions from infections, and a stay in intensive care where it didn’t look like I was going to pull through.

“I had been on children and adult wards, but was eventually transferred to a Teenage Cancer Trust unit, which felt like a different world completely.

“ There was so much space, privacy, a social space with a TV and PlayStation, pool table and juke box.

“It was a real home away from home.

“The Youth Support Coordinator arranged social evenings, and when one of our friends passed away, they were there to help us and offer support.

“Eventually I regained my strength after chemo and joined the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, and completed my Initial Officer Training at Britannia Royal Naval College Dartmouth.

“I left, saw the Teenage Cancer Trust was hiring, and I now work for the charity as a Regional Fundraiser for London.

“It feels amazing to be able to give something back to a charity that helped me so much.”