FAMILY and friends of an inspirational bone cancer sufferer are gearing up for tomorrow’s inaugural York 10k run to raise cash for the charity that was set up in his memory.

Former Fulford School pupil Guy Francis was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in his leg when he was 17.

As part of his fight back he launched a fund to help pioneering research into how the condition can be treated.

However, he lost his battle and died in April 2002, aged 23.

Friends and family have since continued the work of the Guy Francis Bone Cancer Research Fund.

Of the York 10k, Guy’s mum, Ros Francis, said: “It’s great to have such an event here in York. Our group of 27 runners includes Guy’s parents, his sister and her husband, as well as Guy’s uncle, good friends of Guy and other kind supporters.

“We have opened a justgiving page for online donations at and hope to have a good team of supporters on the route.”

She said Guy, who grew up in Wheldrake, hurt his knee playing hockey and was diagnosed with bone cancer in his knee five months later.

“Following intensive chemotherapy, and narrowly avoiding amputation, he went into remission for three-and-a-half years and began to raise money towards research into this devastating cancer that so often affects teenagers, often involves a sports injury and for which there was and still is, no Government funding.”

Family and friends teamed up with other bereaved families, and in 2006 the Bone Cancer Research Trust, an amalgamation of a number of good causes, became a registered charity.

More than £1 million has been raised, and a team of professionals now help the charity choose suitable research projects.

“Currently 13 research projects are under way,” said Ros. “The first has shown that there has been no change in survival rates in this country in 20 years.

“It has also been seen that bone cancers take longer to diagnose than any other type of cancer in young people.

“Our aim is to raise awareness of bone cancer with teenagers, parents, GPs and other medical groups as late diagnosis is so frequent, the pain and swelling often being put down to just growing pains or a sports injury.”

Sue’s running for Palestine

A 59-YEAR-OLD woman will be taking part in her first race since her school days when she does York’s Jane Tomlinson 10k run tomorrow.

Sue Cooke, of Windmill Rise, in Holgate, York, said she was “very excited” about participating in the event.

She has already raised almost £300 for Medical Aid For Palestinians, which aims to deliver basic health care to Palestinian refugees, but is hoping another £200 will be added to her sub-total.

She said: “Although the destruction of life in Gaza is no longer headline news, there is still a massive human tragedy there.

“The continued blockade means access to basic items, including food and medicines, is extremely difficult.

“Many people who would dearly wish to take care of their own families are made reliant on the charitable support provided by Medical Aid For Palestinians.”

Stephen Leah, chairman of the York branch of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, will also be running tomorrow, in support of the charity The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, which campaigns in support of human rights in both Israel and Palestine.

To support Sue’s run for Gaza, visit or phone Sue on 07799034484.

Details of the 10k run

* Start: Knavesmire Road, York, 9am, tomorrow * Route goes via Bishopthorpe Road, Terry Avenue, Skeldergate, York Minster, York Castle Museum, the River Ouse, Bishopthorpe Road and Knavesmire Road