Stair climb to fight cancer

Joanne Todd and Tracey Botazzi
Joanne Todd and Tracey Botazzi

A mum who was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer after a routine dentist appointment is taking part in a stair climb to raise awareness of the disease.

Joanne Todd of Brunel Drive in Biggleswade will climb all 39 floors – 658 steps – of the Radisson Blu Hotel in Birmingham with her twin sister, Tracey Botazzi.

Along with Tracey and Tracey’s husband, Mark, she will raise money for the Bone Cancer Research Trust (BCRT).

The 43-year-old had to have a third of her jaw removed and replaced with a bone from her hip after doctors diagnosed with her with osteosarcoma in 2005.

She has been in remission for nine years and now wants to raise awareness about primary bone cancer, as survival rates have not improved for more than 25 years.

Joanne said: “It was a horrendous journey and my twin sister was my guardian angel.

“She was with me every step of the way so I thought it would be really great to do the stair climb.”

The Herts Fire and Rescue watch commander thought she had a gum infection when she went to the dentist for a routine appointment.

She said: “My whole life flashed in front of me. Here I was, a mother with four young boys and suddenly my life would never be the same again.

“Bone cancer didn’t just affect me – it affected my whole family. They saw me at my worst and they have their scars too.

“There weren’t any charities like BCRT around when I was diagnosed with bone cancer and I really want to help and support others who are going through the same thing.

“We can’t wait to do the stair climb in June and look forward to meeting anyone who would like to join us and help raise awareness about this cruel and devastating disease.”

To sponsor Joanne visit