Stevenage woman's London Marathon bid in memory of friend who lost teenage cancer battle

PUBLISHED: 08:01 28 April 2019

Anne Lovatt from Stevenage is running the London Marathon in memory of her childhood friend Marianthi Giazizoglou, who passed away aged 18. Picture: Courtesy of Tracy Kosmalski

Anne Lovatt from Stevenage is running the London Marathon in memory of her childhood friend Marianthi Giazizoglou, who passed away aged 18. Picture: Courtesy of Tracy Kosmalski

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A 39-year-old from Stevenage will be running the London Marathon today in memory of a childhood friend who lost her battle with cancer when she was just a teenager.

Marianthi Giazizoglou died aged 18 from  non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Picture: Courtesy of Tracy KosmalskiMarianthi Giazizoglou died aged 18 from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Picture: Courtesy of Tracy Kosmalski

Anne Lovatt, who lives in Watercress Close, and Marianthi Giazizoglou were born on the same day in 1979 and had been firm friends ever since.

The pair would have celebrated their 40th birthdays together this year, but in January 1998 Marianthi died.

Anne said: “My dear friend Marianthi died at the age of 18 from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. She had been suffering with this condition most of her teenage life.”

She added: “It is now 21 years since we lost dear Marianthi and this year marks our 40th birthdays.

Anne Lovatt and Marianthi Giazizoglou as children. Picture: Courtesy of Tracy KosmalskiAnne Lovatt and Marianthi Giazizoglou as children. Picture: Courtesy of Tracy Kosmalski

“I am so lucky to be fit and well and this is my opportunity to give something back.”

Anne will be taking on the London Marathon having already completed the Greater Manchester Marathon earlier this month, finishing in four hours 43 minutes.

She said: “From early morning to late evening training runs, freezing weather, aching limbs and blisters, it won't stop me from completing the two marathons in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust, which is a charity very close to my heart.”

Anne has already raised more than £2,000, with a Wine and Wisdom quiz evening at Aston Village Hall in February attracting more than 100 guests and raising more than £1,600 for the cause.

Anne said: “Please help me raise lots for this wonderful charity. Any donation is much appreciated.

“The Teenage Cancer Trust makes sure that they're there for a young person from the moment cancer is diagnosed until long after treatment is over.

“They support young people in lots of different ways, from helping them return to work or school, to giving them advice about dealing with long-term side effects.

“Young people with cancer need specialist nursing care and support, but right now the Teenage Cancer Trust can only help half of the young people diagnosed with cancer.”

If you would like to sponsor Anne, visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com and search for 'Anne Lovatt'.

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