2017 AMBASSADOR


Ronnie Martyn trying out a Harley!

Ronnie Martyn was born and bred in Goondiwindi and spent his working life on the land in cattle and cotton. A hard working man, Ronnie enjoyed life with his partner Michelle with their seven daughters. Life changed in May 2016 when a severe pain in the groin caused Ronnie to visit his doctor. A CT scan found Ronnie had a perforated bowel and cancer of the bowel and liver. Ronnie was transferred to Toowoomba Base Hospital where the infection was treated but this was not successful so Ronnie was taken to the PA Hospital in Brisbane where he underwent an emergency operation by Surgeon Joanne Dale. Ronnie credits Doctor Joanne Dale with saving his life that night. Ronnie survived major surgery but the prognosis was not good - terminal stage 4 cancer of the liver. Speaking to Ronnie you are stuck by his generosity and gentleness as stresses how grateful he is to all the doctors and nurses that have treated him since his diagnosis and for the support and friendship of the staff at the Olive McMahon Lodge. Ronnie has undergone more than 20 chemotherapy treatments and each treatment has involved coming to Toowoomba and staying in the Olive McMahon Lodge. “I have a special thankyou to Jo and Alyse at the Olive McMahon Lodge as I don’t know what I would do without the lodge, the girls are like family to me and my family. We had two days last Christmas at the Lodge and the girls put on a fantastic lunch and the ladies drove my kids around at night to see the Christmas lights and took them to Queens Park for an ice cream. I will never forget it”, remembers Ronnie. As the 2017 Cruise for Cancer Ambassador Ronnie knows how sharing your story with others can really make a difference, “I will never forget a lady I met here at the Olive McMahon Lodge who was in her 80’s and has beaten cancer twice , the look on her face when she told me to be positive I will never forget. To me she is a legend”. Ronnie would especially like to thank Doctor Timothy Slack and Surgeon Joanne Dale at the PA Hospital and a special thanks to the oncology doctor at Toowoomba Base Hospital Doctor B Karki and to all the nursing staff at both hospitals. Those who know Ronnie think he’s a legend too! We are grateful to Ronnie for his generosity in sharing his personal story with us. We are so proud to have Ronnie as our Cruise for Cancer Ambassador this year. Ronnie and his family will be joining us on this year’s Cruise on 27th August and we hope you can join us too.