Milestone moment as The Cows mom turns athlete

After being on the receiving end of the support and generosity of The Cows while her son was undergoing cancer treatment, Durban mother Kjersti Skanke will join the sport-loving ‘herd’ for the first time as she rides the Amashova cycle race 38 kilometre event on Sunday.
When her eldest son Aksel was diagnosed with leukaemia just before his first birthday, Skanke found support from The Cows volunteers who visit the patients and their families in hospital and at the CHOC House facility that allows parents to be close to their children while they are receiving treatment.
With Aksel fully recovered, Skanke has a chance to see the other side of The Cows as she joins the local ‘herd’ riding their bikes and continuing their relentless fundraising efforts for the CHOC Childhood Cancer Association.
“I was very fortunate to get to know The Cows through the amazing work they all do,” said Skanke. “They are kind and compassionate people who have taken time out of their lives to support us, and they always have smiles on their faces.
“Since I first met The Cows, Iris (Varty) has always inspired me to get involved wherever I can! I have always wanted to join them on a cycle race and this year is finally that year!
“This will be my first Amashova and I am so excited and blessed to be riding with a team who are doing it for a cause I deeply recognize and appreciate.
“This ride is for my boy!” she added enthusiastically. “It is also for all the children currently fighting this battle and for all the angels I have met, loved and lost on this journey.”
“Never before have I met anyone as positive and inspiring as this young lady,” said Iris Varty, who serves as ‘Durbs Daisy’ organising the KZN Herd of The Cows.
“I know she has been to hell and back, and then some, and yet, she still smiles that big broad smile and continuously asks me where she can assist with The Cows and CHOC.
“When she messaged me telling me that she was doing her first cycle race, and that she was extremely nervous, I didn’t let her finish. I told her I would ride it with her,” said Varty.