Loss motivates MP

SINCE losing a sibling to cancer last year, events such as Relay for Life are even more significant for Throsby MP Stephen Jones.

Mr Jones will serve as an official ambassador for the Shellharbour Relay for Life in early 2014, which raises funds for the Cancer Council and its many initiatives.

"Like most Australians, you will know someone, either in your family or closely connected to you, who has been affected by cancer," he said.

Mr Jones's brother, Adam, died of leukaemia last August, aged 42, after a six-year battle.

"He left a young family behind as well," Mr Jones said.

"He was gone far too young.

"When I listen to the stories of the survivors and their families, it always makes me reflect on Adam and his battle, and his family that was left behind.

"So that's a personal motivation - to help raise awareness and funds for cancer research."

Relay for Life is a fund-raising festival, which honours the lives of those touched by cancer.

Shellharbour Relay for Life will take place at the Albion Park Showground on March 22 and 23.

Mr Jones has attended relays in Shellharbour and Wollongong.

"It's a great cause and I've always been moved by the speeches given by the ambassadors and guests," he said.

" Their courage is inspiration to us all."

Mr Jones issued a call to arms for Shellharbour residents to get involved in next year's relay.

"The candlelight vigil is very special," he said.

"The first lap is typically one which is led by the survivors, and it can't be easy for them to do that.

"If they can do it, everyone in the community should be joining them there.

"It's a great community organisation, and one that is dear to my heart."

Early bird registration costs $15 per person until January 22.

Register for the 2014 relay online at relayforlife.org.au or by phoning 4223 0200.

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