Faye, 36, and Steve, 39, are challenging themselves to cycle the 2014 Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 on Sunday (10 August), in memory of their grandfather who died from leukaemia in 2007.
Faye said: “In 2012, after an 18 year career I decided to retire from football and took up cycling as a way of keeping fit. My grandfather, Arthur, had always been one of my biggest supporters as well as one of my most honest critics. When England qualified for its first modern era World Cup Finals in China in 2007, the whole family knew that Arthur and I were looking forward to experiencing it together and for him to see me captain my country on the world’s biggest stage.
“As the tournament approached, it was clear Arthur was unable to travel to China due to his health deteriorating. For every game during that World Cup, I always wrote three letters on my wrist band – A.R.T (his nickname) to help me focus. This was also a small way of having him out there alongside me. I was away for just over one month, and was looking forward to sharing the life changing and career defining experience with my grandfather.”
Arthur passed away as Faye returned home from China, without her ever getting the chance to share her experience and memories with him. A number of years earlier he had been diagnosed with leukaemia and passed away due to an illness related to his weakened immune system.
Last year, Faye’s brother Steve took part in the Prudential RideLondon for the first time, raising funds for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research. He loved the event so much that he decided to do it again this year, this time teaming up with Faye.
Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research has long been involved in high profile and innovative bike rides such as its annual flagship event London Bikeathon (which includes various cycle routes around London and Surrey), and London | Paris: Be Unstoppable (a 450km ride to Paris which finishes under closed road conditions).
Matt Lawley, Head of Sports Events at Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, says: “We are constantly inspired by the stories of those fundraising for us and the dedication of our supporters like Faye and Steve. Every penny raised for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research will help us in our mission to make patients’ lives better and stop people from dying.”
To support Faye and Steve please visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/whiteway