Triple tragedy spurs Louisa's Bath Race For Life
After losing three family members to cancer in the space of seven months, Louisa Frears still feels raw.
But she is determined to do something in their memory, and will be taking part in the Race for Life in Bath next month.
Louisa, who lives in Combe Down, had her world turned upside down when her mother Barbara, father Russell, and older sister Frances were all diagnosed with cancer in quick succession.
The 42-year-old said: "Losing three very close family members to cancer in such a short space of time has been extremely tough.
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"I feel very strongly that something positive has to come out of what has happened to our family."
She will be taking part in the Cancer Research UK event with her daughter Cicely.
Louisa's sister Frances died in 2009 when a rare form of melanoma cancer she had fought two years earlier returned to her spine.
Despite crippling pain, she managed to complete the Race for Life in June of that year with Louisa and their other sister Sarah, before dying five months later at the age of 42.
During this time, their mother Barbara began to have her own health problems when she lost sensation down one side of her body.
Doctors at first thought it was a stroke, but tests revealed she had lung cancer which had advanced and spread to her brain, and she died four days before Frances in November 2009.
Louisa and her two children Cicely, then aged nine, and Hal, aged six, moved in to look after her father Russell, who was by then suffering from lung cancer.
Russell died in June 2010, just after Louisa and Sarah ran the Race for Life in Bristol.
Louisa said: "Everything that has happened came as a shock and I really don't know how I coped.
"It is important for us to give something back to people and organisations who have been a support for us all in a very dark time.
"My sister Fran was super-fit, a real Amazonian woman who lived a healthy life, and she would have been the last person in my mind to have been diagnosed with cancer.
"Both my parents were fit and well and non-smokers.
"But I am a great believer that research is the way forward which will help more families stay together for longer."
Louisa and Cicely, now aged 12, will be joining thousands of other women at the event on June 17.
All the money raised will go towards helping Cancer Research UK fund research into the disease.
Race for Life is a women-only event, and will see participants run, walk or jog a 5k or 10k route around the University of Bath.
Cancer Research events manager Sam Beare said: "The battle against cancer never stops and for this reason we need people to take part in Race for Life this year."
For more information and to take part visit www.raceforlife.org or call 0871 641 1111.