Andy's Story

Meet Andy, a long-term Mater patient and fellow B2GC rider

Meet Andy

Andy Steele has always been an unstoppable and avid fitness fanatic. And his most recent feat has been to win his battle with cancer and is now officially in remission after a six-month battle with non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Andy was blown out of the water when in 2022 he was told he has cancer in the bone that had metastasised, after going to the physio to check up on a sore knee.

“The cancer was detected in the ends of the bones where they meet the knees and the elbows—but I was lucky we got it very early.”

Andy underwent six months of gruelling chemotherapy. “I’ve done marathons, ultramarathons and fundraising cycles, but they were easy compared to chemo—it was horrendous,” he said.

Not even his cancer diagnosis kept him off his bike last year; participating in the 2023 Brisbane to Gold Coast Cycle for Cancer, joining 5,000 other cyclists on the 100km ride to raise funds for cancer research at Mater.

The ultramarathon runner and cyclist defied odds and completed the course while recovering from cancer treatment.

“When I actually signed up for the ride last year, it was probably just around the time that I was getting unwell and for several months there, I didn’t know whether I’d get to the start line.”

Andy speaks about the 2023 event as a metaphor for his cancer journey.

“I actually teared up at Ormeau. I just realised and acknowledged that a few weeks before I probably wasn’t capable of being there at the finish, with my mate who’ll also be coming along this time. It was a pretty special moment, realising that I’d made it from the start to the finish, it was amazingly special.”

Andy’s next challenge—2024 Brisbane to Gold Coast Cycle for Cancer.

“It’ll be pretty special this year because I’m out the other side.”

While Andy admits he didn’t have his foot on the pedal for fundraising last year—despite raising an incredible $4,500 for cancer research—he says he’s going to push the pedal this year.

“I’ll go out with a bit of an email and story and then make sure I really stay in touch with people, thank them and encourage them to pass it on to anyone else that can help support.”

“This year I’ve given myself a target of $5,000.”

Andy’s message to those considering participating in the ride or simply donating is “Just do it.”

“Don’t stop to think. If you’re thinking about it, then you should be there—it’s just a no brainer.”

Andy feels privileged this year to be healthy and able to participate and can’t wait to be at the start line on 13 October.

“I’m just to be able to do it. I’d rather not have the C against my name, but it just makes me want to get up and have a go. I’ve come through the other end of it and I can use this as a bit of a celebration.”

“The ride is long, and there will be a few bumps along the way. But when you start to think about what other people have gone through with cancer and their treatment journey, it’s not that difficult.”

Andy is grateful to now be in remission and is currently undergoing maintenance immunotherapy every eight weeks, with another seven lots of treatment over the next 16 months to make sure things don’t change.

Will you donate and help support people like Andy?