AN INSPIRATIONAL teenager who suffers from bone cancer is determined to take part in the Race for Life – just weeks after having part of her leg amputated.
Natalie Turner, from Southsea, was told that if she didn’t have her right leg amputated below the knee, she could die before she reached 25.
And only nine weeks after the operation, the 18-year-old aims to complete the 5km course in Sunday’s Cancer Research UK charity run on Southsea Common.
Natalie said: ‘I’ve taken part in Race for Life before, but this year will be so different.
‘I hope I can be an inspiration to other young people.
‘I want to show them that there is so much you can do.’
I want to show them that there is so much you can doNatalie Turner
Natalie, a hairdresser, was diagnosed with a rare kind of bone cancer in November last year.
It came after she had suffered a constant pain in her ankle in 2013, which she put down to being on her feet all day at work.
She was referred to a physiotherapist and after an MRI scan and other tests, a consultant told her that she had Ewing’s sarcoma.
She said: ‘I had never heard of it, but he explained it was cancer and that I had nodules in my ankles, thigh and lungs.
‘I broke down in tears. I couldn’t believe I was hearing that word. I’m too young. It was the biggest shock of my life’.
Natalie started a gruelling course of chemotherapy and doctors told her the only option was to have her leg amputated below the knee.
Natalie is determined to walk the Race for Life course, despite only having her prosthetic leg for just over a week. She plans to remove it near the end to cross the finish line on her crutches.
Mum Denise said she was ‘incredibly proud’ of her daughter.
‘She’s just amazing. She was at her sister’s 21st birthday party last Saturday and she was dancing all night.’
‘She was the first one on the dancefloor and the last one off.’