A disabled great-gran battling a brain tumor took her first steps in three years for the hospice that saved her life.
Lynn McMorrow bravely faced excruciating pain as she defied her illness to walk 1,000 steps around her local park in Ayr.
The inspiring charity champion has used the services of the Ayrshire Hospice ever since her brain tumor and autoimmune disorders were starting to make her feel like she was “just existing.”
The 62-year-old has been getting help managing her benign tumor which she describes is a “ticking time bomb” with 30 grueling rounds of radiotherapy saving her sight after she was diagnosed in 2018.
Six months later Lynn suffered a major fall after her legs went numb beneath her and surgery left her with metal plates and screws in her tibia.
Now as the Hospice needs funds for their new £13 million extension Lynn wanted to give something back as she walked around the perimeter of Glencairn Park.
The courageous gram-of-nine and great-gran-of-five with another on the way told Ayrshire Live: “I’d be dead if it wasn’t for the Hospice — they are my family.
“They have motivated me and took care of me — I wanted to give something back.
“I’ve not been able to walk for three years, I’ve got a brain tumor and so many autoimmune diseases that I’ve lost count — which means I’ve got a really weak immune system.
“I had a fall in 2019 and I snapped my tibia in three places, which meant I had to get screws and a plate in it.
“I’d be blind just now if I never had radiotherapy, I’ve had 30 sessions at the Beatson, although the tumor isn’t cancerous, it’s benign and inoperable — and there was a risk I’d lose my sight.
“I get yearly scans to check on it, its like a ticking time bomb but recently there hasn’t been any change to it and hopefully that continues.”
After spending years benefitting from therapies, groups, counseling and days out through the hospice Lynn wanted to get involved in supporting them in any way she could.
The fearless granny even contemplated doing a fire walk across hot coals but was told it was too dangerous and opted to take on the mighty walking challenge.
Lynn took on her painstaking stroll on Sunday, February 20 as Storm Franklin battered Ayrshire.
And her plans were nearly quashed as the Forehill Park was left flooded with water due to the relentless rainfall.
Lynn said: “I had it in my head to do the fire walk but it wasn’t safe enough.
“I wanted something that might not be achievable to really test myself.
“I was inspired by Captain Tom, what he did was incredible and I thought if he could do it I could too.
“It was really hard — what made it even more difficult was navigating across the pavements.
“I had to change my route because the park was really flooded so we had to go out with the park.
“I had to cut down going round the park — I did half the park which was the same distance as if I had gone round it.
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“I did 1,000 steps which took me around 40 minutes.
“I was in tears by the time I got to the end. It was so painful.
“I had my family, my grandkids and my great grandkids all there supporting me and spurring me on.
“Three nurses from the Hospice, who are also my family, were there to support me.
“It was so tough but I had to do it for all my donors, every step I took was a step for someone we have sadly lost. It was dedicated to them too.”
Lynn has so far raised an incredible £1,822 after her challenge.
And her successful steps have pushed her to continue to raise awareness of the hospice and she hopes to secure its future in Ayr.
She added: “We need the hospice so much, it gives people like me for a purpose.
“I want to give back as much as I can and keep it going, during the Covid lockdown I went back to just existing again — I felt the way I did when I first found out I was facing a lifelong illness.
“But I feel I’ve got that purpose again. My aim is to keep challenging myself, the more things open up I think the future looks bright for me and the hospice.”
You can donate to Lynn’s fundraiser as part of the Ayrshire Hospice Capital fund here.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.