Ocean Brothers – Atlantic Row
Pictured at the top of the page is us, brothers Jude (left, aged 18) and Greg (right, aged 27).
We are independently rowing across the Atlantic Ocean in January 2018, departing from Gran Canaria and propelling ourselves solely by human power across the pond to Barbados, a mere 3,000 miles West. We are doing this to commemorate our father/stepfather, Pete (pictured above), who suffered a long and painful battle with skin cancer during the last 16 years of his life.
Pete was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer which seldom, if ever, spreads to other parts of the body. Being fair-skinned and having had high UV exposure in his youth, Pete had all the risk factors to develop cancer.
His treatment initially consisted of a small operation, but he required more and more operations as time went by, each one taking larger pieces of tissue from the affected area. Multiple operations left him disfigured and eventually he lost his eye.
The cancer grew back more aggressively, entering his skull. Pete got weaker, his disfigurement got worse. Pete fought for his family, his business, and his life. He fought until the end, inspiring everyone around him. Pete was not only fighting cancer, he was fighting against the stigma of facial disfigurement.
We are continuing Pete’s courageous battle, taking it across 3,000 miles of ocean from the Canaries to the Caribbean.
As brothers, we are natural experts in winding each other up and pushing each other’s buttons. That being said, we are drawn together in this journey with childhoods spent exploring and having many adventures on the Isle of Wight.
Greg was obsessed with his 50cc mini motocross bike which he had aged 5 – 8 before breaking his leg on a jump. After this, his Dad started taking Greg out into the mountains. He was the youngest Britain to climb Mt Blanc at age 13 in 2003 and climbed the Matterhorn at 15 years old in 2005.
In his later teens and twenties, he rushed off between university semesters to go climbing on 1,000-metre cliff faces in France, sometimes sleeping on small ledges for days. Greg now works in A&E as a doctor where he is well suited to work.
Jude is the younger brother and from the age of 6 spent most of his early years sailing in the Solent. He has competed up to a national level in dinghies.
He left school at age 17 after completing his AS levels, destined for a career as a ski and sailing instructor rather than taking the route to University. He spent a month away travelling on motorbikes around Vietnam with Greg.
Jude turned vegan 8 months ago. Around this time he helped Greg to turn vegetarian in their efforts to minimise the effect they have on the planet and to respect animals in the same way as he would wish to be treated.
By funding this trip you will allow us to purchase a boat and make the journey for our late father/ stepfather. This will enable us to raise the vital funds for skin cancer research so that individuals like Pete may have the chance of life.