Together we will find a cure Donate
Together we will find a cure Donate

News

National brain tumour research funding needs to increase to £35 million a year

In memory of Matthew

It is with deep sadness that we share the news that Matthew Pullan has passed away, aged 18.

Matthew died at home yesterday (9th September 2021) surrounding by his loved ones, including his twin brother Alex, his dad Gary and his 15-year-old brother, Mark. Matthew also leaves his step-mum Claire and younger brother Samuel.   

Gary announced the tragic news on Facebook: “Sadly at 1733 tonight Matthew Pullan my eldest son was taken by the indiscriminate disease that is cancer. He joins his Mum who’s birthday would have been tomorrow. He behaved with dignity and personality throughout and we will always be proud of him.”

Matthew was first diagnosed with an ependymoma brain tumour when he was just three years old. He made a good recovery and enjoyed several years of stable MRI scans. In June 2020, Matthew was diagnosed with a new tumour and underwent surgery, followed by radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Earlier this week, Gary announced on social media that Matthew’s condition had deteriorated significantly and an emergency MRI scan confirmed the cancer had spread to other parts of his brain.

Matthew campaigned passionately to raise awareness and we are grateful to him and his family for their support.

Gary said: “Matthew was proud to support Brain Tumour Research, alongside his brother, Alex. He was extremely focused in everything he did; blogging about his cancer journey, engaging with politicians and helping to build a social media community for other people affected by this hideous disease.

“He wanted to die at home and we were relieved to be able to fulfil his dying wish. He passed away in my arms with Alex and Mark by his side, with support from a Teenage and Young Adult Cancer Nurse from The Christie.

“We are so proud of all Matthew achieved and vow to continue supporting Brain Tumour Research in his honour. Matthew’s motto was: ‘life is terminal – it is our job to live it'. I, for one, will try my very best to embody this amazing positivity, in memory of my beloved son.”

Hugh Adams, Head of Stakeholder Relations at Brain Tumour Research said: “Our heartfelt condolences go to Matthew’s family and all those who knew and loved him. We are deeply saddened by the loss of such an inspirational young man with an incredible spirit, that will live on. He achieved so much in his young life but he should have had the opportunity to go on and achieve more.

“There is a severe lack of funding for research for brain tumours, which kill more adults and children under the age of 40 than any other cancer. We cannot let this situation continue to happen. Matthew’s story spurs us on to work ever more resolutely to raise funds for research and to campaign for the government and the larger cancer charities to invest more.”

Our thoughts are with Matthew’s family and loved ones at this difficult time.

If you have been touched by Matthew’s story, please donate to our Childhood Cancer Awareness Month appeal and help us get closer to a cure for all types of brain tumour: www.braintumourresearch.org/appeals/childhood-cancer-awareness-month-donate

Related reading:

If you found this story interesting or helpful, sign up to our weekly e-news and keep up to date with all the latest from Brain Tumour Research.

Donate today

Help us build the UK's largest network of experts in sustainable brain tumour research and campaign for more investment nationally. Together we will find a cure.

£10
£25
£50
£100