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Article by Jess Weller | 26th September 2018

Alex Stedman: Survival of the Fittest

Having suffered pain for several months, Tunbridge Wells based Sports Journalist Alex Stedman was diagnosed with testicular cancer in February 2017.

The diagnosis was that the cancer was spreading quickly, and the 23-year-old was given nine weeks of intensive chemotherapy.

After hearing the news, Alex got a call from former Arsenal, Celtic and Wales striker John Hartson.

He talked the Premier League Media Assistant through what to expect and the chat they had was one of the main factors in Alex battling through his treatment.

News of the conversation went viral and football clubs around the country and the world rallied round in support, sending in signed shirts, football boots, messages of support through social media and much more.

Alex undertook radio and TV interviews to try to help raise awareness and collected signed shirts and football items that the charity auctioned off in November 2017 - raising over £3000.

John\'s phone call to Alex helped him raise money and awareness, but more importantly helped him get through an exceptionally tough few months – helping both him and his family deal with the chemotherapy and its many side effects, including losing his hair.

On Sunday 23rd September Alex ran the Hever Half Marathon in support of the John Hartson Foundation – a charity set up by the former footballer that aims to provide help and support for people and their families affected by cancer.

He has so far raised over £600 for the event, taking his total raised since being given the all clear in April 2017 to nearly £4000.

Alex said: “I can never thank both John and the charity enough for all they have done for me.

“As soon as I got the news and John called all I wanted to do was give something back to show my appreciation.

“The run was one of the most physically demanding things I have ever done, and the weather made it even more difficult – but it was something I am incredibly delighted and proud to have achieved.

“Anything you can give to the charity is very much appreciated, as I continue to try and help those affected by what I went through.”

• You can still donate to Alex’s Just Giving page here.
• To read more about the John Hartson Foundation and the work that the charity does, visit their website.

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