Beat the Beast
This week, we talk to Geoffrey Whitehorn, a truly inspiring fundraiser and rare cancer patient who is raising money to ‘Beat the Beast’.
Here at Cure Cancer Australia, we often have the privilege of meeting and talking to some incredibly inspiring fundraisers with truly compelling stories.
Recently we were contacted by one such individual, WA-based Financial Advisor Geoffrey Whitehorn. Geoffrey and his wife Francine have been married for almost 30 years and have two adult children; Adam, 27, and Rachel, 23.
In December 2016, following three months of abdominal pain, Geoffrey was diagnosed with small intestine cancer (also known as small bowel cancer). ‘I’d had so many tests prior to my diagnosis, but the cancer was undetectable until I had an operation and a resection of my small bowel. That was when I was told about the rare nature of small bowel cancer and the lack of research into the deadly disease.’
Geoffrey, who was 50 at the time, was given 1-2 years to live. ‘It was obviously devastating to us all at the time. I was fit and young in my mind!’ he says.
Nevertheless, Geoffrey stayed positive. ‘I decided I wanted to learn more about organisations that fund research into rare cancers. I really wanted to find the best group to help me fund this sort of research, which is when I came across Cure Cancer Australia.’
Creating a legacy
Geoffrey and his family decided that together, they wanted to try and create the best legacy possible. ‘My family can carry it through as well which gives me great peace of mind,’ he says. ‘My daughter Rachel is graduating from UWA as a medical doctor at the end of the year and her absolute passion to cure is so inspiring. The lack of funding by government is incredible, and it just underlines how crucial it is to raise these funds and support the bright talent of our young medical minds.’
Geoffrey is currently undergoing non-immunity targeted therapy and fortnightly chemo. Despite this, the Whitehorns last week hosted their ‘Beat the Beast’ fundraiser, a beautiful event held at Matilda Bay Restaurant, Crawley and attended by 135 guests. ‘Beat the Beast was a celebration of life, and also an opportunity to mark our upcoming 30-year wedding anniversary. It was a truly wonderful evening, and we were honoured by the generosity of our guests and all those who have helped us raise these much needed funds.’
The Whitehorns' hard work has has so far raised over $10,000 and counting! This is all thanks to the generosity of family, friends and colleagues.
We are so incredibly grateful to Geoffrey and his family for all their hard work. Their dedication and unwavering support for Australia’s brightest emerging cancer researchers is both humbling and inspiring. Thank you. Together, let’s make this the last generation to die from cancer.