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."
You are forever in our hearts.
Recently published stories
Daniel Franklin, a kitchen assistant from Worthing, West Sussex, was diagnosed with a glioblastoma (GBM) in October 2020 after suffering with balance problems and sickness. The location of the tumour on his brain stem rendered it inoperable but he did have radiotherapy. He went on to have chemotherapy, which proved ineffective, and a second round of radiotherapy, which he complemented with holistic treatments. Sadly, from August 2021, his health began to deteriorate and he died at home three months later at the age of 26.Read more
James Lamerton, a teacher from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in his pineal gland in October 2021, later identified as a grade 4 glioblastoma (GBM). He was being treated for sleep apnoea at the time and was taking medication for migraines thought to be connected to the condition. He suffered complications following surgery and died five weeks after his diagnosis, at the age of 40, leaving behind his wife, Myriam and their two-year-old daughter, Layla.Read more
Natalie from Coventry was diagnosed with a brain tumour when she was 27, after suffering a seizure out-of-the-blue. A scan at University Hospital Coventry and Warwickshire showed a mass on her brain. Over the next four years, Natalie had four operations and endured countless rounds of gruelling chemotherapy treatment. After initially being diagnosed with a glioblastoma (GBM) a clinical trial found Natalie was living with an extremely rare type of brain tumour. Desperate to fight the disease, Natalie paid for innovative treatment, travelling regularly to Germany, however the cancer was too aggressive and she died aged 31 in November 2021.Read more
Joe WilsonOur son Joe was only eight when he was first diagnosed with a brain tumour and underwent surgery. He recovered well and we managed to get on with life despite the anxiety of knowing there was a high chance the tumour would come back. Joe was so positive and carried on even when he had to undergo radiotherapy at 13. Joe left home and started a new life at university. Within months he suffered a seizure and never fully recovered. He was 20 when he died at home with his fiancé of two weeks and us at his bedside.
“Joe’s brain tumour dominated the whole of his adult life. Despite everything he remained outgoing and managed to keep his positive outlook, he had a great love of life. He had just started at university when his tumour came back with a vengeance. He had met a great girl who he loved and they got engaged two weeks before he passed away with his head on my shoulder and surrounded by those he loved.” Read more
Joel Evan GreenJoel was just a year old when he was diagnosed with a brain tumour. Born into a large and loving Christian family, Joel defied expectations but was eventually lost at just four years old. Now his parents Ryan and Amy, together with Joel’s four siblings, are remembering the little boy in a most remarkable way. They have developed a video game which allows players to experience the highs and lows of Joel’s cancer journey through the interactivity that only a video game can offer.
“Life is very game-like. Fighting cancer is like a game because you’re trying to do just enough to kill the cancer but not hurt the child. You balance all the options. And it is a multiplayer game because you have doctors, nurses and family all involved in this process of trying to keep your child alive. There are puzzles, as well as simple mechanical tasks like administering medication, taking blood pressure, giving him food – or making him laugh. The difference is that, in a game, if you’ve mastered the skillset, you can beat the level. That’s where the comparison stops.” Read more
Devoted husband and dad John Annis was diagnosed with a grade IV glioblastoma brain tumour in December 2013. One year later, he lost his life after collapsing in the shower room at home in the arms of his wife Julie. He was 48. John and Julie were teenage sweethearts and had been married for 27 years. Their daughter Sophie was just eight when she lost her dad.Read more
John FulcherJohn Fulcher was taken ill on a business trip to Canada. He was diagnosed with an inoperable glioblastoma brain tumour and, together with his wife and accompanied by a nurse, was flown home to the UK. Under the care of Kevin O’Neill, consultant neurosurgeon at Charing Cross, John underwent several surgeries but died ten months later. His widow Wendy is chair of the charity Brain Tumour Research.
“While John was ill and after his death I learnt how little was known about brain tumours and how little research funding was available. Brain tumour research was seriously under-funded and I was shocked to learn there was no national charity dedicated to this area. I am proud to say that the Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence opened in September 2015, is part of John’s legacy. It would not have happened without him or without his surgeon Kevin O’Neill.” Read more
John McCabe CBEComposer, pianist and former Director of the London College of Music, John McCabe CBE was lost to a brain tumour on 13th February 2015, just weeks before his 76th birthday. He had been married to Monica for 40 years and lived in Kent. John was widely loved and respected across the world of classical music.
His wife Monica tells his story …
John McMahonJohn was looking forward to a long and happy retirement with his wife Judith. Previously fit and well, he began experiencing seizures and was later diagnosed with a low- grade glioblastoma brain tumour. Within months the tumour had changed to an aggressive grade IV and he underwent radiotherapy and chemotherapy. He defied expectations to live for three-and-a-half years, losing his battle in June 2014.
Here, his wife Judith tells his story … Read more
John PettyferJohn was just 51 years old when his life was cut short by a glioblastoma multiforme, but right up to his last few days he continued to think of and care for his family and animals, rather than dwell on himself. He was a very brave man who kept everyone entertained with wonderful anecdotes and his great sense of humour.
Here is John’s story…
“My Dad died in the early hours of Monday 25th July 2011. The whole family was aware that an eerie silence had fallen, that there was no dawn chorus, not one cockerel crowed… And when I went out to tend his animals, my Dad’s favourite cockerel was dead, and the single ferret he owned was missing from her cage. We like to think he took them with him.
“Life sometimes makes no sense and most certainly not in this case. My Dad was far too young to go at just 51 years old. But Dad, you were never beaten! We believe you just had somewhere else you needed to be.” Read more
After experiencing slurred speech and severe neck pain, farmer, dad and grandad John Riches was diagnosed with an inoperable grade four glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), a very aggressive form of brain tumour, in 2001. He died less than a year later, aged 58.
“I called home one night to see how they both were and asked if dad was free to talk, to which dad shouted ‘I’ll speak to him tomorrow’ over the sound of the TV show, Have I Got News for You. Sadly, I never did get to speak to him the next day.”Read more
Jon WinnFather-of-five Jon Winn died after a five year battle with a brain tumour he didn’t even know he had. The glioblastoma mulitforme (GBM) which took his life wasn’t diagnosed until after his death. His partner is angry that he was misdiagnosed and endured a nightmare five years struggling to get answers.
“As the months went by, Jon continued to go downhill and I had to give up work to look after him. Jon lost his speech and it became difficult for him to move around. He could no longer play football with the boys. I did my best to see that we could still do things as a family.” Read more
Jorja-Rose was the youngest of six children, adored by her parents and siblings alike. Aged just 15 months, she was diagnosed with a rare and inoperable pineoblastoma brain tumour and underwent chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant which gave her six months of good health. Sadly, Jorja-Rose suffered a relapse and passed away just three months after her parents got married. She was just two years old.Read more