12th March 2024

Running for Dad and supporting those with lung cancer

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In 2022, life took an unexpected turn for dedicated NHS worker Carla Harrison. At 49 years old, Carla – married with two wonderful daughters aged 15 and 12 – found herself facing an unimaginable challenge when her father, Steve Short, was diagnosed with lung cancer.

Steve was a beloved dad, grandad, and devoted husband who had spent his entire working career as a local estate agent. Known for his kindness and caring nature, Steve built lasting relationships with his clients. He was a familiar face in the community, always ready to share a friendly chat and lend a listening ear to those in need. His passions ranged from his cherished Harley Davidson motorbike to badminton, outdoor bowling, archery, snooker, and, above all, a profound love for music – the louder, the better!

“My dad was a wonderful dad, grandad, and husband. He was always kind, caring and always very supportive of myself and my sister. He couldn’t go far without someone stopping him to have a chat and he always put people at ease”

The lung cancer diagnosis came as a shock to all, especially given that Steve had never smoked. Despite encountering setbacks that hindered his chemotherapy, Steve bravely faced his diagnosis, undergoing one round of treatment. However, the journey was arduous, marked by hospital stays and challenging months for both Steve and his devoted family. Tragically, on August 22, 2023, nine months after the diagnosis, Steve Short passed away.

The loss left an irreplaceable void in the lives of his family. The simple joys of chatting about random topics, seeking advice over the phone, or having him pop around to visit became poignant memories. To channel grief into action, his daughter Carla decided to embark on a personal journey of healing and remembrance.

This year, she committed to running the Manchester half marathon in October, not only as a physical challenge but also as a means to raise funds for Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation. Too young to run alongside their mum, Carla’s daughters (and Carla’s mum) created a heartwarming Christmas hamper and raffled it off to family and friends! The result – a £220 contribution to Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation just before Christmas.

“Losing dad has been extremely hard for us all and I just feel like there is this massive void that can never be filled. What I miss the most is not seeing him either sitting on the settee or popping round to ours to see us and the girls.”

In honouring Steve Short’s memory through running and fundraising, this family exemplifies the strength that arises from tragedy and the power of coming together to make a positive impact in the face of loss. Through their actions, they hope to contribute to lung cancer research, turning their grief into a source of support for others enduring similar challenges.