TR Press UK - 15-07-2016

Fathers of children with cancer: We've had some good talks

Tummas Joensen and Edvard Pauli Andreasen have experienced children's cancer at very close range. It's brought the two Faroese Team Rynkeby cyclists closer together.

Stage 6, Charleroi: One can sense years of worry and pain in the voice and eyes of 59-year-old Tummas Joensen, who is currently cycling in his second Tour de Paris to benefit children with cancer.

In September of last year, he lost his daughter, Tóra, to cancer. She was 17 years old.

"She was just 18 months old when she was diagnosed with a tumour of the cerebellum – she battled with it her entire life," explains Tummas Joensen in a calm voice.

"By the time had her confirmation, she had gone through five brain operations and had chemotherapy and radiation therapy – and when she was 14 years old, she was completely well and you couldn't see that she had ever been ill," he continues.

But in June of the same year, the cancer returned.

"It was far more aggressive than before, and in September of last year she died, at age 17," says Tummas Joensen.

A real community in Team Rynkeby
Tummas Joensen stands in front of the Faroese team's hotel in Charleroi together with his Team Rynkeby team-mate Edvard Pauli Andreasen, who has also been personally touched by children's cancer.

"We have a three-year-old daughter who was diagnosed with liver cancer when she was just six months old. "She received chemotherapy for three months, and fortunately she's doing well now," explains 30-year-old Edvard Pauli Andreasen.

But their common experiences have brought the two men closer together.

"We've had some good talks while cycling. "We understand one another. "But generally speaking, there is a very close relationship between the participants on Team Rynkeby. "It's a community where I feel that I can make a difference, and where I feel very comfortable," adds Tummas Joensen.

A very special finale
Edvard Pauli Andreasen nods in agreement.

"It's really rewarding to be part of this community. "It's fantastic that it is possible to gather together so many people from all across Scandinavia to raise money for children with cancer. "As a father, I want to know why children get cancer, and this is why it's so amazing that we can raise so much money for children's cancer research," he says.

The Team Rynkeby Faroese cyclists will conclude the Tour de Paris tomorrow along with the other 37 Team Rynkeby teams.

For Tummas Joensen in particular, the finale will be a special one.

"I was on Team Rynkeby last year, and when we arrived in Paris my wife, son and daughter were there to greet me. And they won't be there this year. "My wife and son will be at home instead. "It's going to be very emotional," he says.

Follow Team Rynkeby's final two stages here: www.team-rynkeby.com/live.

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




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