Friends Run in Memory of Mel

24 May 2018

Ahead of DKMS World Blood Cancer Day Alexander Martin-Wright and Elizabeth Marshall both went the extra mile to raise awareness of blood cancer in memory of their friend Mel Farrell-Rhodes.

The pair decided to go the distance as Alexander, from Liverpool, completed the John West Liverpool Spring 10K, on Sunday 6 May, and Elizabeth, from Rotherham, crossed the finish line at the Great Manchester 10K Run, on Sunday 20 May.

Mel’s story

41 year-old Mel had been living with aplastic anaemia since the age of eight. Last year, she was diagnosed with a rare condition called myelodysplasia anaemia and needed a blood stem cell donation.

We supported the #MatchForMel campaign and a matching donor was found.

Despite this, sadly Mel passed away. So the pair wanted to dedicate their runs to their friend Mel whilst raising vital funds to help register more potential lifesavers.

Going the Distance for Mel

Alexander, along with colleagues at the jewellers David M Robinson, Jackie Salmon and Baron Blackman crossing the finish line.

Alexander who worked with Mel at the jewellers David M Robinson said: "Mel was an true inspiration for so many people and I wanted to do something in honour of her, as she was an amazing woman. We miss her terribly.

"Mel and her family were passionate about encouraging more people to register as potential blood stem cell donors and I would urge anyone to take the first steps and please register."

Elizabeth Marshall at the Great Manchester 10k Run

Elizabeth’s initially met Mel at work and they remained friends for nearly 18 years. Mel played match-maker and introduced Elizabeth to her now fiancé and took full credit for their forthcoming wedding.

She said: “I wanted to run for DKMS in memory of my lovely and so-very-much missed mate Mel. Having being friends for so many years I was keen to run in her memory and help raise awareness of blood cancer and disorders.”

How you can help

To register one potential blood stem cell donor it costs £40. Please support Alexander and Elizabeth in their fundraising mission to help us register more lifesavers.

Anyone between the ages of 17-55 and in good general health can go on standby to potentially save a life. Check your eligibility and sign up as a potential blood stem cell donor today.