Dancer relishes chance to perform at Paralympic opening ceremony
A woman who was once told she had terminal cancer is relishing the chance to perform at the Paralympic opening ceremony this week.
Becki McGuinness, 25, of Southfields, will be dancing with a group of wheelchair users and able-bodied performers in front of the Queen on Friday.
Miss McGuinness was 21 when she was diagnosed with a benign tumour in the bottom of her spine and bone cancer osteosarcoma.
At one point she was told it was terminal, but is now in part-remission and is hoping by dancing she will inspire others who are diagnosed to give it a go.
She decided to audition for the opening ceremony in March this year, finding out to her surprise in April she was selected to perform.
The former Kingston College student is also using her starring role as an opportunity to raise money for Sarcomma UK, a charity which has given her support her in the past.
She said: "When I got told I was terminal, I thought that was it. Then I found out I was in part remission.
"I felt I could still do things with my upper part of my body, I thought I had something to give.
"I wanted to show young adults and children there is life after being diagnosed with a tumour. I am 25 now, there is a chance to do things with the community."
Miss McGuinness is set to perform on the west side of the Olympic Stadium, which is close to where the Queen will be watching the show.
She described the experience as "daunting", but has enjoyed meeting new people and will have her proud mum watching from backstage.
The performer is set to become a volunteer for Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital after the opening ceremony and also blogs about coping with cancer to help others going through the experience.
Visit justgiving.com/CopingwiththebigC to make a donation.