Stories of people living with and beyond cancer

Anne Nally-Keenan, cervical cancer survivor

Learn about some of the people supported by the Irish Cancer Society

Keith Downey

Keith is thankful for the fortunate piece of advice that saw him diagnosed with bladder cancer at an early stage.

Joanna Louise Twomey
Joanna Louise

'This was my way of paying back while getting treatment for myself'

Nicola Lyons-Duffin

'I was proud that I participated in a trial that can potentially save lives.'

Jamie Brady

"It's so weird to feel like a bit of your body betrays you," says testicular cancer survivor Jamie Brady.

Elaine Scully in hospital

"My first night in hospital was the night the lockdown was announced" - acute myeloid leukaemia survivor Elaine Scully.

Aidan Hunter

Testicular cancer survivor Aidan urges, "If something isn’t right, don’t hang around: get it seen to."

Bernadette O'Hanlon

"There is such a taboo attached to bowel cancer, as if we shouldn’t be talking about it."

Vicki McGrath

"The decision straight away was double mastectomy and reconstruction. It wasn’t a difficult decision for me. I just wanted to live."

Kenneth Giles landscape

‘If you delay and don’t get it seen to, the consequences could be life-threatening’

David Simons

‘Some people don’t know what to say to you’

Brian Britton family
The Britton Family

The Britton family shares their father Brian's diaries of life with a terminal cancer diagnosis.

Redmond test

"I feel I was one of the lucky ones. I didn't have any symptoms of pancreatic cancer."

Rhona Nally

"More and more metastatic patients live for many years with a good quality of life."

Simon Henry

"With a new-born to deal with, my mind was spinning."

Tadhg Hanlon

"I remember my Dad telling me we had to be prepared in case it was something more serious"

Robbie Connell

"If you take anything from my story, if you notice anything unusual in yourself, then please, please get it checked"

Childhood cancer
Abi & Michelle

"I want the world to know how proud of our daughter we are"

Alan test

"Hearing the words 'you have cancer' at the age of 17 is utterly surreal"

Clare Breen

Clare Breen shares her story of how cancer treatment caused her to think ahead about future family options

Saoírse Ruane

Big names take part in virtual festival for 8-year-old Saoírse, who was diagnosed with an Osteosarcoma tumour

Jane Jackson

"The waiting game during the pandemic is not a good one" - Jane's experience of skin cancer during Covid-19

Deirdre Smyth

"People need to take personal responsibility for the vulnerable in society" - chemotherapy during Covid

Karen sugrue 1

"I haven't been able to hug anyone" - Karen's story of receiving a cancer diagnosis during a global pandemic

Vanessa Job

"I had to wait over three months for my colonoscopy" - cancer patient Vanessa Job shares her experience.


"Staff are trying to make it as easy as possible" - Aileen Murphy shares her experience of treatment and cocooning.

Anne Nally-Keenan, cervical cancer survivor

Westmeath woman Anne was 29-years-old and 29 weeks pregnant when she was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2012. 

Real Cost of Cancer case study Sinead Kealy

Sinead was 34, two years married and just after becoming a mum for the first time when she was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma in October 2009.

James Anthony

"These images show the reality of not wearing sunscreen," says skin cancer survivor James.

Pa Heenan 2
Pa Heenan

'My story is positive because of my reaction,' says testicular cancer survivor Pa

Paul Coghlan

'Lean on others during your journey, don’t try to do it solo'


‘I’m grateful every day that I noticed it in time’

Peter Corcoran

'Taking that step (to get counselling) changed my whole world'

Back of anonymous woman

Anne describes her counsellor as ‘a wonderful person who came into my life at the right time’

Karen Carey Moylagh

‘Without vital cancer research I wouldn’t have had treatment options’

Paul Markey

'Go get yourself checked out. Sometimes we men can be a bit macho about the whole thing,' says lymphoma survivor Paul.

Emma Muldowney Dublin

“6 months ago I struggled to even think about getting out of bed and now I am taking on a 10k run” - Ovarian cancer survivor Emma

Ciara garvey

"I like to see my cancer as a pause in my life, a really bad pause, but a pause all the same.” - Thyroid cancer survivor Ciara

Eddie McGuinness

‘I want to encourage men not to be scared’

annemarie mc
Anne-Marie McCutcheon

“It felt like everything was coming at me at the one time – it was incredibly overwhelming.”


“Nothing is as scary as the ideas you create in your head.”

marianne 3

“I know my cancer diagnosis will make me a better oncology nurse, I have now been on both sides of this experience.”

Vip Patel

"For the hour-long drive home and for a while after that, I just kept thinking: ‘Not me, he wasn’t talking about me."

Mike Walsh

‘Staying active was a huge part of my recovery’

Breffni McCabe

‘I was amazed with the care I got’

Francis Deasy

Testicular cancer - ‘It changed my attitude to life entirely’

Do you have a cancer story you'd like to share?

We'd love to hear it. Stories like yours help us raise awareness and save lives.