TWO Basingstoke campaigners have had their crusade backed by a Paralympian who is set to dedicate one of her races in Rio to their cause.
Michelle Williams and Lisa Slaymaker, the duo behind a campaign urging the Government to back a nationwide Brain Aneurysm Awareness Month, received support from Team GB Cyclist Megan Giglia, a survivor of this life threatening condition.
Megan will dedicate a race in honour of Michelle and Lisa’s Soul Sisters campaign when she takes to the Rio velodrome next week.
“Lisa and I feel overwhelmed and honoured to have the support of Megan,” Michelle told us. “It means so much to have the support and backing of anyone impacted by brain aneurysms and subarachnoid haemorrhage, but even more so to have the support of Megan because we found her whole story of survival and recovery so inspiring.”
“The fact Megan is now representing Team GB at the Paralympics is wonderful.
It is so motivational and inspiring, not only for us in our fight to raise more awareness about the condition, but also for all other brain aneurysms victims and survivors.”
Michelle added: “Megan said she would like to dedicate the 500m TT sprint to us, as she says it is such a quick race that it symbolizes how lives can be lost and changed in seconds with a ruptured Brain Aneurysm and Subarachnoid Haemorrhage.”
A ruptured Brain Aneurysm is a Life Threatening Condition, which NHS statistics show is fatal in around 60% of cases. About 3 in 5 people who suffer a subarachnoid haemorrhage die within two weeks. Half of those that survive are left with severe brain damage and disability.
Michelle and Lisa met after The Basingstoke Gazette published Michelle’s story on her experience of suffering a ruptured brain aneurysm, which led to the 47-year-old business owner requiring life-saving Brain Surgery.
Lisa’s mother passed away suddenly in 2012 after suffering from the same condition and she contacted Michelle to praise her fighting spirit.
Currently the pair are on a quest to visit each golden postbox, awarded to every gold medal winning Olympian and Paralympian at London 2012. From each Postbox they are sending letters to Politicians, Heads of NHS and Specialists in the field of Neuroscience encouraging support for their campaign.
Megan told the Soul Sisters: “You ladies are doing an amazing thing and I will back you in anyway possible. I love the gold postbox theme and I would like to dedicate one on my rides to you and hopefully help spread the word about your mission.”