Courageous Runcorn mum inspires Kilimanjaro climb

Karan and her daughters, Harriet and Charly

Karan and her husband, Ian

Chris Collings on Mount Kilimanjaro

Chris at the summit

First published in News Runcorn and Widnes World: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A COURAGEOUS Runcorn mum battling a brain tumour has inspired a fundraiser to climb the highest mountain in Africa.

Mum-of-two Karan Waller, aged 36, is currently undergoing radiotherapy, with help from the Astro fund, a charity which provides cancer sufferers with emotional and practical support.

Karan, who works as an apprentice manager at Warrington Council, was diagnosed with a low grade astrocytoma after collapsing at home in 2009.

Despite several surgical procedures, the growth has returned and surgeons have told her they can’t operate again.

Family friend Chris Collings is so impressed by her bravery, he has launched a fundraising campaign for the Astro Fund.

He has just raised £4,300 after reaching the 20,000ft summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.

Former St Chad’s pupil, Chris, aged 44, said: “It is heartbreaking for Karan.

“Her journey is massive. Her story inspired me. I wanted to get the top of that mountain for her. It was an honour.”

He wants to thank Karan, who climbed Mount Snowdon with him, and all his friends who accompanied him on training walks on Ben Nevis.

Chris, an IT consultant, said: “It was incredibly emotional at the top of Kilimanjaro. Because of the low oxygen, you feel a bit whoosy, dream-like. I’m not religious but seeing the clouds and the sun, I felt close to God.”

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He now hopes to recruit 100 fundraisers, to each raise £100 and join him for a Snowdon £10,000 challenge in the summer.

Chris added: “The Astro Fund is helping Karan by putting her on a special diet which is slowing down the growth of the tumour.

“The more money we can raise, the more people can be helped by their research.”

Chris said he was overwhelmed by the support of the local community for his celebrity charity football match starring John Bishop at Runcorn’s Millfield Stadium.

Karan’s family is organising a charity night at The Quayside on March 1.

Anyone interested in joining the Snowdon challenge can e-mail chriscollings@hotmail.co.uk

To support the appeal, visit justgiving.com/nevis-killimanjaro

 

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