THE BROTHER of Leamington woman Helen Sabin who has a rare life-limiting illness is taking to the saddle to raise money for vital medical research into the condition.
Helen is one of only around 150 women in the UK with lymphangioleiomyomatosis – known as LAM – which causes cysts to develop in the lungs and can make it difficult to breathe.
Her 47 year-old brother James Blackburn, who grew up in Cubbington and now lives in Devon, is taking part in this year’s Prudential Ride London-Surrey 100 on Sunday August 10 in aid of the charity LAM Action.
“I love my sister and want to help her in any way I can,” said father-of-two Jim, director of Carbon Green Consulting in Exeter.
“LAM Action is a small charity that’s doing an amazing job, but it needs every penny it can get to fund medical research into an effective treatment.”
Mum-of-two Helen was diagnosed with LAM after suffering a collapsed lung six years ago and was told to seek medical advice by her father who is a retired GP.
Helen said: “It was an extremely difficult time, but I had so much support from LAM Action that it helped me through a very difficult period.”
The 44 year-old has been able to control the progression of LAM by taking the medication Rapamycin and uses an oxygen canister to help her breathe.
But she is unable to walk any great distance, can no longer run, or play her favourite sport of netball.
Jim is one of 80,000 riders to take part in the traffic-free Ride London-Surrey 100 cycle race which starts at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London and travels to Surrey and then returns to The Mall.
Visit http://ow.ly/yTWPV to support James. Visit www.lamaction.org for more information on LAM Action.
Jim’s sister Helen Sabin was diagnosed with LAM six years ago. (s)