I am delighted that The Recorder Newspaper, Port Pirie, South Australia, published my Letter to the Editor.

To sign the Kyam Maher MLC South Australia “Voluntary Assisted Dying Petition”, please go to > https://www.change.org/p/south-australian-parliament-show-your-support-for-voluntary-assisted-dying-in-south-australia

To check out my name, Ian Wood,  in the Froot Loops Team, Port Pirie Cancer Relay for Life, and to donate if you wish, please go to > https://secure.fundraising.cancer.org.au/site/TR/RelayforLife/CCSA?team_id=68433&pg=team&fr_id=6051

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Letters: Cancer relay call

CHARITABLE: Ian Wood makes a start on his contribution to the Port Pirie Relay for Life as he walks 96 laps around Wills Place where he lives in Mittagong, New South Wales.  [In total I am aiming for 960 laps, 280km].

As a former resident and retired community pharmacist from Port Pirie, I issue a double challenge to the folk of Port Pirie and district, and the wider area of South Australia.

I was very disappointed to read that with 70 days to go, only 5 teams and 12 participants had registered for the Port Pirie Cancer Relay for Life 2021.

Due to Covid-19, the event, an important fundraiser for cancer support and research, is in a different format this year, with participants simply committing to walking 28km in their own time, while still getting sponsorship and donations to the cause.

The 28km was chosen as 28 South Australians are diagnosed with cancer every day.

I challenge the people of Port Pirie, the footy, soccer and netball teams, young and old, boys and girls, to commit to this event.

Please do your bit and register your name online today and/or make a donation!   As a 79-year-old, I have joined a team, the Froot Loops, and will be walking my 28km in NSW. In fact, I don’t think 28km is much of a challenge, so I am aiming to walk 280km before the event date of Saturday 27 March 2021.

My second challenge, to the residents of Port Pirie and indeed the whole of South Australia, is to publicly voice their support for the Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill recently put before the SA Parliament by Kyam Maher MLC and Dr Susan Close, MP for Port Adelaide.

I am the National Co-ordinator and Spokesperson of Christians Supporting Choice for Voluntary Assisted Dying, a group co-founded in 2009 by the late Rev Trevor Bensch of Adelaide and myself.

Every family has been affected in some way by cancer, with my Aunty Doss dying an horrific death from bladder cancer some years ago in the Port Pirie Hospital.

Having a Voluntary Assisted Dying law would enable a compassionate end of life choice, giving all terminal cancer patients the option to avoid that final futile devastating suffering that can still occur despite good palliative care.  Please talk to your local MP now and urge a “yes” vote for the legislation.

Ian Wood,  Mittagong,  New South Wales

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Thank you again, to The Recorder Newspaper, Port Pirie

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