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A year and a half ago Sandrift East’s Angus Kerr (18) was told he had 24 hours to live.
A lot has changed since that ominous day.
For one, it has recently been announced that he is a joint winner of Lead SA’s Youth Hero award.
“I was speechless when I heard,” says the Tafelberg High School learner.
Lead SA spokesperson Sheyaam Hill says Angus is a “special young man”.
“Angus is a cancer survivor whose brave work with cancer patients earned him the title. He, along with other ‘Warriors’, visit paediatric wards across Cape Town with the aim of cheering up children fighting the aggressive disease. Angus is on a mission to put a smile on someone else’s face, to create – if only for a few minutes – a space in which the young patient can forget the cancer and enjoy the things many of us often take for granted.”
Gone was the carefree, selfish boy who loved playing sport.
That day the new Angus was born – a fighter, a motivator and a philanthropist.
“There were times when I was very depressed. I was basically alone for eight months. I needed to talk to someone who also went through this type of treatment,” he tells TygerBurger.
On 1 January last year Angus returned from holiday and complained about shortness of breath and bad eyesight. That night numerous tests were performed on him in hospital and the next morning he woke up to the teary eyes of his family.
The diagnosis hit him like a bombshell.
“Only 30 % of my blood factory was working. Everybody around me was crying so I just had to stay positive. It was definitely the worst day of my life.”
Eight months of chemotherapy, hope and determination has since lead to his leukaemia going into remission, but his battle is far from over.
One lonely and despondent cancer patient is one too many, according to him.
“I want to be that person who I never had. I want to motivate others,” he says.
Last year September he started the organisation “Angus Warriors: Teens with Cancer” and since then more than 60 cancer patients have benefited from the group of volunteer cancer survivors.
It’s not an easy mission and Angus knows it. He used to go to the bathroom to cry, so that his parents wouldn’t see, and got rid of his aggression by hitting a punching bag.
“I know what they’re feeling, but I maintain that before the day is out I will make them smile.”
It’s no surprise that Angus wants to be a motivational speaker one day.
In the meantime he strives for smiles, and in doing so, he shows the whole world that good deeds come in droves.
***DISCLAIMER: THIS ARTICLE WAS PUBLISHED IN TYGERBURGER, A CAPE TOWN BASED MEDIA24 COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER. IT MAY NOT BE DUPLICATED WITHOUT ACCREDITING THE SOURCE – TYGERBURGER, MEDIA24.***
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