The Realf family, from Rugby, along with their friends, have put their efforts into fundraising since their son Stephen was diagnosed with a Brain Tumour in 2008.
The fundraising event held at Sutton Circuit, raised £810 which was presented to the University’s Brain Tumour Research Centre.
Stephen graduated as an RAF Officer at the young age of 18 and at the time was the second youngest person to be training to be an RAF pilot. One year later, at the age of 19, he was diagnosed with a Brain Tumour.
With no previous knowledge, his father Peter set about researching his son’s illness, and looked into additional ways he could help others in similar circumstances.
Peter Realf said: “The more I read about brain tumours, the more I realised how woefully underfunded research has been and still is, with less than one per cent of funding going to brain tumour research.
“Fundraising has given us something positive to focus on, knowing that we are making a difference to someone, somewhere, even though we are finding it difficult to accept that it is too late for Stephen.
“It is vitally important to fund the Research Centre, to help other people and their families through such difficult times.”
The Karting event, attended by 40 members of Covkartsport Kart Club, was organised in memory of Peter’s friend, Martin Stone from Staffordshire.
On his 70th Birthday, veteran kart racer Martin, had asked for donations instead of gifts at his birthday party, to raise awareness and funds for research, after he heard about Stephen’s condition.
Sadly, not long after the event, Martin himself discovered he had a brain tumour, and passed away four months later.
The Realf family, their friends, and the University, now plan to host an annual Karting event with the aim of making an even bigger and better contribution to their ‘Brain Tumour Research Centre’ next year.
Stephen’s grandmother, who passed away in January, also made a special request for her funeral, that she would prefer donations to the Research Centre in lieu of flowers, and the subsequent donations totalled an additional £680.
Accepting the cheque from the Realf family, Vice Chancellor of the University Professor Geoff Layer said: “It’s when we receive donations from people like you that are so helpful towards treatments, medical equipment and vital research that we can end up saving lives.
“On behalf of the University of Wolverhampton I would like to say a big thank you for making such changes possible.”
Brain tumours are the 10th most common form of cancers in adults, but have been dubbed the ‘Cinderella’ of cancers due to acute under-funding.
For more information please contact Danielle Taylor in the Media Relations Office on 01902 322448
Date Issued: 30 April 2014
Notes to editors:
World-renowned researchers at the Brain Tumour Research Centre, based at the University of Wolverhampton, carry out vital work to tackle this killer disease, and we hope to team up with them, involving both staff and students, to raise the money and awareness they desperately need.