Marie Smith is the leader of Relay for Life team Mel’s Lap Dancers and has been taking part in the annual fundraising campaign for almost a decade. Mrs Smith is a clerk in the Royal Hobart Hospital’s oncology ward. The cheeky name of their team is a tribute to a lost friend, “The original team members were predominantly nurses from the Royal and, if you think about it, nurses do laps around the wards all day.
“Mel was one of our nursing staff. She died of leukaemia seven years ago, leaving behind a couple of young kids, so we renamed the team in her memory.
“Since Mel, we’ve lost another two people from our team who are battling cancer at the moment. We’re a tough little team.”
Mrs Smith said working in oncology could be tough but it had its silver linings occasionally.
“It’s those good moments when you see a former patient walking down the street looking fantastic,” she said.