Life-saving donation prompts East Preston man to run London Marathon for cancer charity Anthony Nolan

An East Preston man who gave a life-saving donation of blood stem cells is running the London Marathon for cancer charity Anthony Nolan.

Luke McCarthy, 31, joined the Anthony Nolan register via the blood donor register back in 2015 and last year, he was found to be a match for a blood cancer patient.

Luke McCarthy with Jo May and Kelly Greenhill, who helped by doing the scoring

Luke McCarthy with Jo May and Kelly Greenhill, who helped by doing the scoring

The experience showed him just how much money it takes to make one single donation and opened his eyes to the work of the pioneering charity.

Luke said: “Out of a number of other matches for the recipient, I was the match that would give her the best chance of a successful donation.

“I gave a successful donation on July 10 last year. It’s been since this experience that I have witnessed first hand the dedication, expertise, passion and willingness of everyone involved in the Anthony Nolan family.

“I know there are many good causes to raise money and awareness for but as I have a personal connection to Anthony Nolan and cancer in general, I felt it fitting to try to do my bit to help out.”

Luke has set a target of £2,500 and held a fundraising event at East Preston Football Club on Friday, supported by family and friends, to help boost the money raised on his JustGiving page.

Victoria Waller, his sister, said: “I am extremely happy to tell you we raised £1,415. It was a massive success and could not have gone any better.

“We sadly five years ago lost our mother to cancer and with all of this in mind, this sparked the fire for the journey Luke was about to embrace and continued to dedicate himself to do as much as he could.”

Luke will be running the London Marathon on Sunday, April 28. Visit Luke’s Virgin Money London Marathon page to make a donation and go to www.26point2.run to follow Luke’s progress.

Anthony Nolan is a pioneering charity that saves the lives of people with blood cancer. Every day, it uses its register to match donors willing to donate their blood stem cells to people who desperately need life-saving transplants.