TR Press UK - 08-07-2017

Cancer-stricken girl takes City Hall Square by storm: "I have great respect for what you do"

15-year-old Sascha Karlsen gave a moving speech to the Team Rynkeby participants yesterday in connection with the charity cycling team's departure for Paris.

Prologue, Copenhagen: 250 Team Rynkeby cyclists and a few thousand spectators were present on City Hall Square yesterday when Team Rynkeby began its 16th Tour de Paris to benefit children with critical illnesses.

One of them was 15-year-old Sascha Karlsen, who had gone to City Hall Square with her mother to wish Team Rynkeby luck on their trip to Paris.

And Sascha Karlsen knows what's at stake when the Team Rynkeby caravan makes its way down through Europe.

For more than 10 years, the young girl has been in treatment for a brain tumour – one that the doctors have not had any luck in treating as yet. And this autumn, she will begin yet another course of treatment with a new type of medication.

"I've had over 115 chemotherapy rounds in my life. And when I had my latest relapse last autumn, I had undergone major brain surgery which I still suffer side effects from," says Sascha Karlsen.

But the tumour, which infiltrated her brain and which also presses on both optic nerves and therefore is destroying Sascha's vision, continues to grow.

"I've lived with this tumour for so many years, and I've always known that the longer I live with it, the better the doctors will be at treating me. And I really believe that the doctors have now found the medication that will help me make progress," she says.

We'll never forget it
On City Hall Square, Sascha Karlsen was allowed to give a speech in which she wanted to thank the Team Rynkeby participants for the work they do to benefit children with cancer.

"It means so much that there are so many people who give so much of themselves and spend so much of their free time doing something good for children. I just have so much respect for these people. It means a great deal – not just for me – but for all the children with cancer," said Sascha Karlsen, who after a speech that quieted all chitchat on City Hall Square, found it possible to relax a bit more and enjoy the atmosphere.

"It's a truly great and intense experience that I will never forget."

Over the years, Team Rynkeby has donated around DKK 150 million to the Children's Cancer Foundation, which has put the vast majority of the funds towards financing research into children's cancer – including research concerning improved forms of treatment that can hopefully also benefit Sascha Karlsen.

Team Rynkeby consists of 1,700 cyclists and 450 service teams divided into 44 local teams from 6 countries – 5 of the teams started the Tour de Paris as a group in Copenhagen. All 44 teams will arrive in Paris next Saturday.

You can follow Team Rynkeby live on www.team-rynkeby.dk/LIVE.

The news you have just read was translated by Amesto Translations A/S.




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