Bob Carnaby speaks after being named as joint winner of Clarence Valley Citizen of the Year.
Bob Carnaby speaks after being named as joint winner of Clarence Valley Citizen of the Year.

Cancer survivor shares message of hope

GRAFTON local Bob Carnaby will participate in the 2020 Grafton Relay For Life on April 4-5 at Jabour Park, South Grafton.

The 2020 Clarence Valley Citizen of the Year is a grade three advanced prostate cancer survivor, after his daughter also suffered from cancer.

They first attended Relay For Life six years ago after his daughter’s diagnosis.

“Relay For Life feels right,” Mr Carnaby said.

“We are doing something good with the fundraising aspect and doing something good for ourselves.

“I participate in Relay For Life to raise funds for research and development in finding a cure for cancer.”

Bob Carnaby was participating in the 'Relay for Life' event at McKittrick Park South Grafton on Saturday. Photo Debrah Novak / The Daily Examiner
Bob Carnaby was participating in the 'Relay for Life' event at McKittrick Park South Grafton on Saturday. Photo Debrah Novak / The Daily Examiner

Six years ago Mr Carnaby’s eldest daughter underwent a double mastectomy and the treatments that followed. Two years later, he was diagnosed with prostate cancer which had escaped and became advanced grade three.

After undergoing radiation therapy and hormone therapy, Mr Carnaby says he was now “in a good place and feeling very well, enjoying life to the fullest”, along with his daughter.

“A very life changing few years, with the side effects, physical and emotional strain and all that these bring,” Mr Carnaby said.

“I first participated in Relay For Life to support my daughter. Now I participate for everyone’s benefit.”

He said it was important individuals understood the motives of Cancer Council.

In recent years Mr Carnaby joined the Cancer Council as a facilitator in the Survivorship Enrichment Program, which connects cancer affected individuals with support services.

He said he joined to ensure other people didn’t fall victim to what he did.

“It is a great eight-week program which sets people up to live a better life, to think more positively and most importantly to not feel they are on their own,” he said.

“It feels so good to be contributing to society and helping others.

“People are so grateful. It is so heartwarming.”

Mr Carnaby encourages all individuals to get involved in the Relay For Life to raise funds for cancer research.

He said the thing he loved most about Relay was the “common bond”.

“The mood in the air.

“Everyone is going through a similar journey.

“We all seem linked somehow, it is weird, but it is a nice-weird experience”.

  • For more information or to register a team in the Relay For Life, go to www.cancercouncil.org.au/graftonrelay and like the event on Facebook for updates at www.facebook.com/GraftonRelayForLife