Remembering Sue Young

By Lucy Gossage, 5k Your Way Co-Founder

“When people ask me how I am, I don’t talk about the bad stuff. I tell them I’ve started running”

Sue Young, March 2019

Back in 2018, when we first started 5K Your Way, if anyone had asked me what I wanted to achieve with the initiative, I would have described someone like Sue Young. I would have pictured someone finding the group after diagnosis and using it as a crutch throughout treatment. I would have pictured someone finding joy from a new challenge despite a devastating diagnosis. I would have pictured someone just like Sue.

I met Sue at the Nottingham group in I think February or March 2019 and over the next two years Sue became a good friend. Sue discovered running in her seventies, after being diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer, having seen a banner advertising the group in the hospital. But don’t let my words tell you her story; she shared it with us last year and you can listen to her here:

Sue was one of those people who made the absolute most of life. How many people in their seventies are brave enough to take up running, yet alone take up running after a cancer diagnosis? How many people joke that if they break sub 40 minutes for 5K they’ll jump in the river naked, and stick to their words? How many people motivate and inspire others from their hospital bed, even when they are too weak to get out of bed themself?

Sue epitomised to me what 5K Your Way could and will achieve.

“When people ask me how I am, I don’t talk about the bad stuff. I tell them I’ve started running.” 

“You can’t have long term goals but I can plan for the next parkrun.” 

Whenever I question whether all the hard work is worthwhile, Sue reminds me it is. There are and will be so many other ‘Sue’s’ out there and remembering Sue will always motivate me to keep believing in what we’re doing.

Whenever I begrudge running into work along the tow-path I will remember the days I bumped into Sue out there and will smile.

And whenever someone questions why we do what we do I will think of Sue and remember.

Sue died at home on the 21st April 2021 with her husband Dave and daughter Alex with her. I can’t imagine how much they miss her and my heart is with both of them.

Thank you Sue for your energy, your humour, your passion and your inspiration.
I will always remember you and 5K Your Way, Move Against Cancer will continue with your memory at the heart and core of everything we do.

Lucy xxx