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In Our Hearts

Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years

These very brave people will remain in our hearts for ever and it is because of them that we are fighting to find a cure so that no other family should have to suffer in the same way.

We thought of you with love today, but that is nothing new.


We thought about you yesterday, and days before that too.


Anon

You are forever in our hearts.

Recently published stories

Michelle Noakes

In August 2019, mum-of-two Michelle Noakes, from Bow in East London, had her ultimate dream wedding to her beloved husband, Simon. They were surrounded by their friends and family, with their young children Otto and Poppy there to take part in their special day. Only a few months later, however, their world would come crashing down when Michelle was diagnosed with an aggressive and inoperable brain tumour. Determined to defy her stark prognosis, Michelle underwent standard of care NHS treatment, as well as private therapies, but sadly her condition worsened and eventually, her options ran out. She died at home in June 2021, aged 39, leaving her loved ones devastated. Her family feel strongly that there needs to be more funding for research to find better treatments so that other young children do not lose their mum in this way.

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Chloe Clayton

Chloe from Worcestershire died exactly a year after she was diagnosed with a rare grade 4 brain tumour. She began to experience painful headaches and after trips back and forth to the GP, she was finally referred for an MRI scan which revealed devastating news of a mass on her brain. Months of radiotherapy couldn’t compete with the aggressiveness of the tumour and the cancer spread and Chloe died on 15 September 2016 at the age of 19, surrounded by her family. Six years after her death, her brother, Jordan is fundraising to help fund the fight and find a cure for the deadly disease.

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Michael Crayford

Michael Crayford, of Gillingham in Kent, was diagnosed with a rare immature teratoma, a type of intracranial germ cell tumour (GCT), in September 2016 after suffering with sudden headaches, blurred vision, sickness and balance problems. He underwent five brain surgeries, intensive chemotherapy and radiotherapy but died six months later, in March 2017. He was just 13 years old.

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All stories

Clive Gathercole

Husband and father of four boys, Clive Gathercole was eventually diagnosed with a glioblastoma brain tumour after suffering months of health problems. He died in August 2012.

“In my anger I thought about complaining about the terrible care we received and the problems with securing a proper diagnosis, but I am not sure looking back at the past negatively is helpful, so instead as a family we are forging ahead with our fundraising plans to fund more research into brain tumours. I would hate to think of other families facing what we have been through, and think the lack of awareness of this disease is a tragedy in its own right.”
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Colin Burt

Colin Burt, from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, was 49 when he died from a brain tumour he had bravely fought for five years. Colin was happily married to Fiona and together they enjoyed a life full of love, travel and music. Colin underwent two brain surgeries and several courses of radiotherapy before his treatment options eventually ran out. He died at home in August 2019, leaving his 43-year-old wife Fiona heartbroken and facing the rest of her life without her ‘soulmate’.

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Colin Goldberg

Semi-retired heating engineer Colin Goldberg died in November 2021, 14 months after being diagnosed with a grade 4 glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The much-loved 67-year-old, of Croydon in South London, was initially thought to have suffered a stroke after experiencing some confusion and a drooping of his face. He was scheduled for a craniotomy and told to isolate for one week prior to surgery due to the risk of catching COVID-19, but he was rushed into hospital early after suffering a seizure. He went on to have radiotherapy and chemotherapy but his health continued to decline. He died at home with his family, and his daughter, the youngest of his three children, holding his hand.

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Colin Shaw


Passionate flat-green bowler Colin Shaw was 69 years old and 11 years into his retirement when he collapsed unexpectedly.  Initially thinking it was a reaction to malaria tablets taken in preparation for a forthcoming holiday, he and his wife were shocked to learn that he had an aggressive grade 4 glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain tumour.

With a second tumour discovered nine months later, Colin lost his fight only 18 months after the first diagnosis, with his family all around him.

“If there is such a thing as a perfect death, Colin had it.  We were all there, me and our three daughters, when he quietly slipped away.”

 
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Collette Drifte

Freelance writer and loving wife Collette had plans for a blissful retirement with her husband of 29 years, Reinhard. However, after being diagnosed with a glioblastoma multiforme in August 2016, her dreams of travelling and relaxing were tragically cut short. She faced her illness with optimism and courage, bringing laughter to all those around her, until she sadly passed away at the age of 65 with her husband at her bedside.

I could see that she was drifting away from us and, as she slipped into a coma, the feeling of powerlessness was overwhelming. I had done all I could to help her. I was woken up by the night nurse who told me Collette was about to die. I’m grateful that this allowed me to be with my wonderful wife for one last time.

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Craig Johnston

We are grateful to Craig who worked with us in September 2020 to share his story here. Sadly, he passed away in November 2021. We remember Craig as we continue our work to raise awareness of this devastating disease and to fund research to help find a cure. He will be forever in our hearts.

Craig Johnston was diagnosed with an astrocytic brain tumour in 2018. The 33-year old dad-of-two from Newton Aycliffe in County Durham has since had two brain surgeries, radiotherapy and is currently on his second course of chemotherapy to treat the cancer. Determined not to let his diagnosis defeat him, Craig has turned to fitness, setting himself ambitious goals as he tackles the disease head-on. He is now in training for the prestigious Ironman UK endurance event, due to take place in Bolton in July 2021, with the ultimate aim of earning a place in the Ironman world championships at Kona, Hawaii.

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Dan Abel

Probate genealogist Dan Abel was diagnosed with a grade 2 astrocytoma in 2012 after a Specsavers optician noticed swelling on both his optic nerves. The father-of-three, from Rayleigh, Essex, had been suffering with headaches, impaired vision and occasional weakness in his arms and legs, but all of his symptoms had been attributed to migraines. He underwent three brain surgeries, radiotherapy and chemotherapy but died at home in his wife’s arms four years later. He was 43 years old. 

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Daniel Payne

Daniel Payne, of Brackley, Northamptonshire, had already been treated for testicular cancer when, in 2006, at the age of 22, he was diagnosed with an incurable grade 2 astrocytoma. During his 13-year-long battle with the disease, he not only faced testicular cancer a second time but underwent four brain surgeries, developing an abscess and a serious infection as a result. The last three months of his life were the most difficult as his tumour progressed to a grade 4 glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and he lost control of his body, ultimately deciding he did not want to continue with treatment. He died at home by his loving wife’s side on 23 December 2019.

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Danny Green

The Danny Green Fund was set up when his parents lost their gorgeous son Danny at the age of 11. Before he was diagnosed with a brain tumour, their beautiful, fun loving and energetic son was a typical 10-year-old in every way, very much living for the moment and enjoying life. Tragically, Danny died just nine months after diagnosis, leaving a void which will never be filled.

“Our hearts are broken and can never be repaired. To lose a child is unbearable and should not happen. Danny is the inspiration for our charity: to raise funds to help children with Posterior Fossa Syndrome, which was Danny’s main battle on a daily basis, to fund research to help find a cure, as well as to raise awareness of this devastating disease to hopefully prevent other children from suffering as Danny did...”

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Danny Griffiths

Danny Griffiths, from Bingham in Nottinghamshire, was 57 when he died from a brain tumour he bravely fought for two-and-a-half years. Danny was happily married to Andrea and a proud father to Olivia, 22. Danny’s tumour was inoperable but he underwent palliative chemotherapy to try to prolong his life. He spent his final weeks being cared for at home by Andrea and Olivia and tragically died in December 2020, having contracted COVID-19 just days before. Olivia, who has just qualified as a nurse, is now keen to raise awareness of the disease, which killed her dad and tore her family apart. 

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