Candyce Charles is running for the future of ocular melanoma

Candyce is taking part in the Race Roster Spring Run-Off Saturday, April 7, 2018 with proceeds going to The  Princess Margaret.
 

29/03/2018  |  Events |  Posted by: Jessica Lopatka

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In late 2016, Candyce Charles noticed that her eyesight was rapidly declining. She was seeing flashing disc-shaped lights and had a persistent eye twitch.  After several doctor visits, she never would have guessed that her loss of vision was being caused by ocular melanoma (eye cancer). 

“Until my diagnosis, I had never heard of ocular melanoma,” says Candyce. “It's an extremely rare cancer that affects approximately five in one million people.  As it turns out, I'm one of those five.”

Candyce walking trailsAfter being diagnosed with ocular melanoma in June of 2017, at age 46, Candyce went through extensive treatments, which included two surgeries and a targeted form of intense radiation known as plaque brachytherapy. She continues to visit Princess Margaret Cancer Centre for MRIs, CT scans, X-Rays, and blood panels in addition to visiting her ocular oncologist every three months.

Her particular tumour has a high-risk of metastasis, meaning that it will likely spread to other parts of her body. If this happens, her illness will most likely be terminal. With all that Candyce is going through, though, there is one thing that she is truly thankful for, the tremendous support and compassion shown to her by the Cancer Centre staff. 

Touched by their kindness and the quality of care she has received and continues to receive, Candyce decided to stay connected to the Cancer Centre by following The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation on Facebook. There, she found a post for an event called Race Roster Spring Run-Off and felt it would be a perfect fit for her to participate in.

Candyce in a custom-made shirtCandyce has been a passionate runner since her twenties, but taking on a challenge like the Race Roster Spring Run-Off is a completely new experience for her. 

“I have never enrolled in a race. I have never run with a group. I have never fundraised before. This is really a first for me,” says Candyce.

At this year’s event, Candyce will be running 8 km, and she has already seen a tremendous amount of support, raising over $4620. She has decided to donate her fundraising to ocular oncology research at The Princess Margaret in hopes that doctors will one day be able to get a better understanding of this rare disease and find a cure.

Find out more information about the Race Roster Spring Run-Off.