'It was New Year’s Eve when my wife was first diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer.'

February is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. How will you help?


It was New Year’s Eve of 2008 when my wife was first diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer. In the 15 months that followed my family and I undertook a harrowing fight to save Lyn, my wife and adoring mother to our three kids. Sadly in March 2010 Lyn passed away.

Lyn was diagnosed in 2008 and died on the 8th of March 2010.  It was a very intense 15 month process of operations and treatments. Lyn was no stranger to the hospital as she was previously a nurse. On several occasions she ended up in intensive care and endured several operations and numerous treatments of chemotherapy and radiation.

Professor Michael Quinn, Lyn’s surgeon and a past colleague from her nursing days was my first introduction to the Women’s Cancer Foundation – Ovarian Cancer Institute (WCF – OCI).  Initially it was great to know that she was in safe and trustworthy hands and throughout the 15 months Michael and I formed a close friendship.

I was approached by Michael after Lyn’s passing and was offered a position on the board of the WCF – OCI. I was keen to help raise awareness of the disease and more than happy to assist in whatever way I could so I jumped at the chance to be a part of  the Women’s Cancer Foundation – Ovarian Cancer Institute.

Since Lyn’s death, my three children have also shown strength and commitment to the cause, which is extremely understandable given the circumstances. For me, the decision to become a Board Member for WCF – OCI was a family decision and a choice I haven’t regretted for one moment.

We as a team and close family  have helped support the WCF – OCI by getting involved in as many fundraising ventures as possible and we have successfully raised close to half a million dollars in the past four years.

As a Harness Racing and Trotting enthusiast, I have also successfully launched the Lyn McPherson Memorial ‘Breed for Speed’ Trotting Mares Sprint Series which has been running now for four years at Tabcorp Park in Melton with the next Series Finals being run there on the evening of Saturday 22nd March 2014.

Turn the Tan Teal.

I also work with a dedicated group of Lyn’s friends who form the Lyn’s Lunch Committee, with the help of my daughter Tess McPherson. They hold numerous events throughout the year including an annual luncheon at Sandringham Yacht Club each November which successfully raised in excess of $35,000 in 2013.


As February is National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month the WCF – OCI is holding its annual charity fun run/walk, ‘We Can Walk it Out’. Held at The Tan on Sunday February 16, the Women’s Cancer Foundation – Ovarian Cancer Institute plans to ‘turn the tan teal’ – the official colour for ovarian cancer – by encouraging everyone to walk or run in the colour teal.

My children and I participate in the walk every year and this year will be no different. We are looking forward to seeing a sea of teal take over the tan to help gain awareness of the disease and raise money to assist with research, help reduce mortality rates of ovarian cancer and improve the outcome of Women’s Health.

‘We can Walk It Out’ supports Ovarian Cancer research which is a cause close to my heart so it’s an exciting day for all of us at the WCF – OCI and the McPherson family. Awareness of the disease is vital towards early detection and lower mortality rates so I’m really looking forward to seeing the sea of teal on February 16.

Duncan McPherson is the Managing Director of 2Construct, a construction company specialising in commercial and civil works. He has over 25 years’ experience in the building industry, having held senior roles in a number of Melbourne companies. He is a member of the Australian Institute of Building and is a registered Commercial and Domestic Builder and a director of a number of other related companies. Duncan is a board member of the St Kevin’s Foundation and was voted onto the board of the Women’s Cancer Foundation.  He works tirelessly to raise awareness of Ovarian Cancer since his wife succumbed to the disease in 2010.  Duncan won the OAM award in January 2014 for his community and fundraising efforts for the Women’s Cancer Foundation and Breed for Speed Trotting Mares Sprint Series held annually.

February is National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. To help raise awareness for this insidious disease and fundraise for research initiatives, the Women’s Cancer Foundation (Ovarian Cancer Institute) is hosting its annual 4km walk or 4km and 8km run around the tan.

The aim is to ‘Turn the Tan Teal’ by asking that everyone wears teal, the international colour for ovarian cancer. This will show support and help raise awareness of ovarian cancer and its symptoms, as well as raise funds to find an ovarian cancer vaccine, continue the work of the Women’s Cancer Foundation and ultimately save lives.

There will be family friendly entertainment, a free BBQ, fruit and water to enjoy on the day. Everyone is welcome, even your pet pooch.

Teal balloons will be distributed so you can write your message of support for your loved ones and take them around the track with you as inspiration.

Everyone will be given a free teal t-shirt and there will be prizes for the best teal outfit.

To register, donate or support a fundraiser visit.

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