A woman's obsession with tractors is set to pay dividends for the Circle of Friends cancer support group in Tipperary town.
“I’m going to organise a tractor run, a ‘Ladies’ tractor run, I’m going to get as many women driving tractors as possible.” vowed Josephine Peters, after seeing her consultant regarding her cancer treatment.
This Sunday her plan will become a reality when women from all over the country driving tractors will gather in Knocklong.
Josephine,whose late father Morgan was from Emly and her husband James is from Bansha , is a regular visitor to the Circle of Friends group in Tipp town.
The funds raised will go to the Circle of Friends in Tipperary town and to the Mid Western Cancer Foundation in UL.
Josephine was diagnosed with endometrial cancer on 16th March 2016 which led to her having a hysterectomy on 11th April last year. A CT scan on 24th June, which was the same day her father died, showed tumours in her lymph glands, breast which is thankfully benign and on her right kidney. After 6 rounds of chemotherapy and 25 sessions of radiotherapy and 2 brachytherapy treatments she is now waiting for the results of another CT scan this week and a date for an operation to remove the kidney tumour.
Despite all of this she remains positive and is kept busy planning her own tractor run, and taking part in other runs, a hobby which she has enjoyed for the past 3 years since she bought her beloved Ford 4000 tractor. Her love of tractors and especially Ford tractors comes from spending summers drawing silage with her brother Pat Hughes who has a collection of Ford and County tractors.
Because of her cancer diagnosis Josephine chose the Circle of Friends Cancer Support Centre in Tipperary and The Mid-Western Cancer Foundation in Limerick to be the charities that would benefit from the tractor run. Both these centres provide support to the patients and their families during treatment and are essential to the well-being of those who have a cancer diagnosis.
“It seemed to be the most obvious thing to do, bringing together the two things close to my heart – tractors and cancer. Everyone is affected by cancer these days and every woman that has cancer has a male relative who is also affected, whether a husband, father, son, brother, uncle or nephew etc.”
“So the run is for all drivers, male or female, but with the emphasis on getting women driving tractors. I have heard of women who have been learning to drive a tractor for the day. There are tractors coming from as far as Monaghan and Armagh to take part in the run and from all parts of Munster.”
As well as tractors, trucks and cars are welcome on the day as well. There will be a separate route for the trucks and cars. All going to plan there will be a special treat in one of the villages where all vehicles will join up and divide again to make the return to Knocklong where a meal will be provided for all participants.
“I would just like to thank all of the vintage and classic clubs throughout the county, and the people of Knocklong who have helped and supported me in organising the run and I look forward to seeing a great turnout on the day.”
“My father’s last coherent words to me were “I’m so proud of you, my darling Daughter”. I know he would have enjoyed this day so much, and be a proud father. So this day is a tribute to him – Morgan Hughes.” said Josepine
Registration at the Community hall in Knocklong from 10.30am and vehicles leaving at 12 noon.