Rowen’s marathon to help father

Rowen Bustillo
Rowen Bustillo

A DAUGHTER is running in next year’s London Marathon for a leukaemia charity in honour of her father who is fighting the disease.

Rowen Bustillo, 23, of St Matthews Drive, St Leonards, was used to living an unhealthy lifestyle, with plenty of nights out and cigarettes.

But since her dad was diagnosed with leukaemia last October, it galvanised her to take part in the guelling 26-mile race, due to be held on April 22 next year.

Rowen, who works at Hastings Direct, is hoping to raise £2,000 for Leukaemia CARE.

She has already raised £390 by running in this year’s Race for Life in Alexandra Park during the summer, in aid of Cancer Research UK.

She said: “Last October my dad became very ill with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. It was a horrible time for everyone involved.

“In March my dad received a vital stem cell transplant from his brother. It is now more than 100 days since the transplant, and he is still fighting strong.

“We are taking every day as it comes.

“I had decided to turn my running away from the situation into something good - running into the light and not into the dark.

“Leukaemia CARE provides vital support to those living with leukaemia and other blood related cancers. It is a small charity, so does not have the large media backing that other charities might have, so it needs all the publicity and fundraising it can get to keep doing its fantastic work.

“I have already started training. It will be very gruelling for me, as I have never done anything like this, so it will push me to the limits.

“Thinking about my dad and others who suffer or who have suffered with blood related cancers will keep me through the training all the way to the finish line.

“I’ve been set a target to raise £2,000, but obviously I want to raise as much money as possible.”

She is using the social media sites Facebook and Twitter to keep people up to date with her progress and to help raise awareness for an excellent cause.

Anyone who wants to help out can log onto www.justgiving.com/53000STEPS.