FOUR years after being diagnosed with cancerous brain tumours Jonathan Tiplady is on the verge of learning to walk again.
The 24-year-old from Howden, East Yorkshire, was diagnosed when he was in his second year of a law degree at Hull University.
He was given a 20 per cent chance of survival and at one point was down to four stone.
Now weighing just over 10 stone, he is fighting back to fitness by training for four major charity events this year alone – the Jane Tomlinson Leeds and York 10k events, a half-marathon in London and a Yorkshire Dales walk also inspired by Mrs Tomlinson.
Jonathan will take part in his wheelchair, as his leg muscles have yet to recover the strength lost during 17 months in hospital as he struggled for survival after several major operations.
He recently took a few steps with the help of a walking frame and later this year hopes to walk a few steps unaided.
Although he has not fully recovered – his short-term memory is still badly affected – Jonathan is enjoying his new life.
“I did the Leeds 10k in an hour and five minutes last year. Maybe I can do it under an hour this time,” he says.
“I will probably still need a co-runner with me as I get tired sometimes and need a push up the hills.”
He is currently training hard with friend and sports physiotherapist Ian Morgan, who has supported Jonathan since he became ill.
Jonathan’s mother Helen, his full-time carer, said a scan four months ago revealed that the cancer had gone.
“The progress being made is good but experts don’t know when it is going to stop. He still has a long way to go, but it’s all good and positive.
“He has days when he says ‘why am I miserable? There are plenty of other people in a worse situation’.
“He is still a very intelligent young man but we very much doubt he will get back to doing law and being a barrister because of his memory problems.”
He is raising money for Yorkshire children’s cancer charity Candlelighters and Martin House children’s hospice at Boston Spa, near Wetherby, and has a £2,000 target.
To sign up for Jane Tomlinson events go to www.runforall.com.
To sponsor Jonathan go to www.virginmoneygiving.com and search under “Tiplady”.