When Lucie Carrington was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer at the age of 15, her whole world was turned upside down.
The teenager was just about to start her GCSEs at Ripley St Thomas High School in Lancaster, but Lucie said her “relationship with death” turned her into a 35-year-old overnight.
In a situation of pure luck and chance, Lucie’s mother, an oncology nurse, took one look at the egg shaped lump on her forearm and immediately suspected what it was.
It turned out to be Ewings sarcoma – a rare type of bone cancer – although at the time Lucie thought she had been kicked during a Taekwondo session. Had it not been picked up, she would have lost her arm.
The diagnosis resulted in a year’s worth of intensive chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery.
A decade on, Lucie is just about to embark on an epic 36 day voyage across the Atlantic, joining the Great British round the world sailing team between New York and Holland on June 7, aiming to raise £10,000 for the charity that helped her get through.
Lucie, now 26, who lives in Bowerham, said: “It will be 10 years to the day since I was having chemo. At the moment I don’t know anyone who has had this type of cancer and survived. I had the tiniest lump and and thought I’d just been kicked. It was pure luck and chance.”
Surgeons removed the bone from Lucie’s arm, took it to another hospital, blasted it with high dose radiotherapy, then screwed it all back together with metal plates and around 20 screws. She got the all clear five years later, following more surgery and two breaks to her arm.
Despite her situation, Lucie still managed to complete her GCSEs, A-levels and more recently a degree in computer animation.
“I did my GCSEs in hospital and my maths exam in the back of an ambulance and I managed a B!” she said.
“Five years ago I went on the Ellen Macarthur Cancer Trust sailing trip, and it really helped with my confidence, that’s why I want to help the Ellen Macarthur charity.”
Lucie now works for the Jimmy Teens charity, which uses media to help teenagers and young adults who have been affected by cancer.
To donate, go to www.justgiving.com/LucieCarrington.
Lucie addeD: “I’m terrified about the trip. To be honest I’d rather be watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians, this really isn’t my thing.
“I’ll be filming the trip to make a documentary. I didn’t think that 10 years on I would be sailing across the Atlantic Ocean, and what makes this adventure even more special is that I’m getting to represent the Ellen MacArther Cancer Trust. “The trust gave me a boost when I needed it most, and I am hoping I can raise a lot of money and awareness during my trip!”