Ethan Beats Cancer to Return to the Ice with the Colts

March 18, 2018

Ethan Lancaster started playing ice hockey at the age of four in 2006 with the Invicta Juniors and has played with the Club ever since. Ethan took up the sport after being introduced by a family friend who once played themselves, and Ethan took to ice hockey from the very first time he stepped onto the ice.


As a skilled, speedy and powerful defenceman, the 2016/2017 season was supposed to be a year when Ethan was able to showcase his skills across two age groups and three teams; icing for not only the Under 15 Invicta Mavericks, but also the Under 18 Invicta Colts and U18 Invicta Broncos. 


However, in February 2017 disaster struck for Ethan and his family when he was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. 


Despite the diagnosis, Ethan continued to train and play games for all three of his Invicta Junior teams, and he was also invited to train with both the Invicta Dynamos and Invicta Mustangs senior teams. 


After attending training on 28th March, Ethan stopped playing hockey to undergo surgery for a total thyroidectomy just three days later on 31st March.  Ethan was in surgery for four and half hours and had to stay in hospital for five days.

The surgery went as planned, but Ethan's battle was still not over.  In May, he began regular radioactive iodine (radioiodine) therapy sessions on The Teenage Cancer Trust Unit at the Royal Marsden Hospital.  Due to the nature of the treatment Ethan had to remain in isolation for three days after each session.  The facilities on the unit were fantastic and access to movies and games consoles in the non-clinical environment helped Ethan cope with the long recovery periods.


Thankfully Ethan’s surgery and post-operative treatment went well and within six months he had fully recovered, regaining full movement in his neck.  Ethan is back on the ice this season and patrolling the blue-line for the Invicta Colts and is busy studying for his GCSEs. 


Ethan talks about finding out he had cancer:

"After being diagnosed I was not really fazed, as I only listened to the positive outcomes of the surgery, I continued with ice hockey right up until the week before my operation. I had great support from my team mates and coaches, my friends from school and my family." 


From his diagnosis, right up to present day, Ethan and his family have received fantastic support from the Teenage Cancer Trust, which helped ease the pain, stress and suffering of what they had to go through. 


The Teenage Cancer Trust is a cancer care and support charity that exists to improve the cancer experience of young people aged 13–24. Founded in 1990, the charity's key service is providing specialist teenage units in NHS hospitals.  The units are dedicated areas for teenage and young adult patients, who are involved in their design and creation, and the units are equipped with computers, TVs and video games.  


To show her gratitude to the Teenage Cancer Trust Ethan's Mum, Amanda Franklin, has secured a place in the 2018 Virgin London Marathon and will be running the 26.2 miles on Sunday 22nd April to raise funds for the charity that is very close to her heart. 


“From the moment we were told "your child has cancer" we were in absolute shock! To receive such devastating news, felt as if our world had fallen apart. The support of friends and family, and Ethan's positive mental attitude helped us get through a very tough time. The support from the Teenage Cancer Trust was absolutely phenomenal!  The facilities and specialist care they offer to teenagers and young people is out of this world and without doubt helped Ethan cope with his diagnosis, treatment and recovery." 


While Ethan is back on the ice playing ice hockey, Amanda is well into a gruelling training programme for her marathon run and busy trying to raise as much sponsorship money as possible for the Teenage Cancer Trust. 


To read more about Ethan's battle with thyroid cancer, or show your support for Amanda in the 2018 London Marathon, please visit Amanda's Virgin Money Giving page at:


Invicta Junior Ice Hockey Club would like to welcome Ethan back onto the ice this season with the Invicta Colts and wish Amanda the very best of luck with her training schedule and the Virgin London Marathon on Sunday 22 April. 


For more information on starting to play junior ice hockey with the Invicta Juniors visit the New Players section of our website at:



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