raised of £100,000 target
by 454 supporters
RCN 1095197

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I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl on 9th April 2003. We named her Courtney Lily Hector. She was my first born. She was my only daughter. She was my best-friend. From the moment she arrived, she always bought us such joy. She had a beautiful laugh but would also let us know when she wasnt happy. When her younger brother Tyler came along three years later, she was so excited to have a little brother and they have always been very close.

She worked hard at school and did really well in both her GCSEs and A Levels. She wanted to be a lawyer so she could help people and she really would've been a phenomenal lawyer.

When Courtney first began getting headaches, we never imagined that we would lose her.

December 2021: Courtney started having severe headaches. She went to her doctors and they told her to go to the opticians first. They then found a shadow and that's when it all started!

17th January 2022: The test showed she had a small growth on her brain. It was treated with steroids and the swelling was temporarily reduced but more needed to be done as the tumour was putting a lot of pressure on Courtney's brain. She was at risk of going blind and had to have surgery to allow fluid to flow to the opposite side of her brain.

26th January: Courtney had 8 staples removed and her vision began getting worse again. She was given medication to try and improve this. Despite this the surgery was successful and she became hopeful.

30th January: Having passed her driving test in December, she was told she couldn't drive for six months so she sold her car.

10th February: Doctors said Courtney could go back to the gym. Slowly, life was returning to normal.

27th March: Courtney started to feel unwell and was admitted to hospital overnight for tests. She began losing her sight in both eyes.

9th April: Courtney celebrated her 19th birthday with a party she had the best time! Although at first she didn't want too as felt unwell.

12th April: The tumour had grown, and the doctors wanted to operate.

14th April: A biopsy was carried out on the tumour. It was non-cancerous. However, given that it was growing so quickly it needed to be treated in the same way as a cancerous tumour.

28th April: Courtney went to the Royal Marsden to discuss her treatment.

4th May: She had her final scans, so doctors knew where to target the radiotherapy.

12th May: Courtney began her 6-week radiotherapy treatment. Every day, Monday Friday myself and Tom made the journey with Courtney from Bracknell to the Royal Marsden. She also had to take a chemotherapy tablet every day.

During her treatment she lost all control of the left side of her body

Once the treatment ended, Courtney had to take a chemo tablet once a month for 6 months.

1st - 11th June: Courtney spent another 11 days in hospital. She was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and taken off the chemo tablet as it was effecting her liver.

Courtney began physiotherapy as her body was very weak.

1st July: Courtney's vision became blurry, and her hearing started to go

10th August: Good news, the swelling on her brain had gone down and it looked like the tumour had shrunk slightly. Courtney was then put back on to the Chemo tablets.

As the weeks passed Courtney started to feel much better, she saw the light at the end of the tunnel and started looking to the future.

11th November: After a routine check-up appointment she received a call from the hospital saying they had found tumour cells on the surface of her brain. Not long after this, cells were found on the top of her spine. Courtney lost her appetite and was being sick every day.

27th November: Courtney was rushed into hospital and taken into intensive care. She went into a self induced coma and her body began shutting down.

3rd December: Courtney passed away.

She was so brave through all of this. Courts has always been a very strong person but her battling this brain tumour really showed everyone how strong she really was. At some points through Courtney's journey she didn't know if she could carry on fighting, but she did.

She fought until the very end and she never gave up once and I could not be prouder of my baby girl.

My beautiful brave daughter was so selfless and kind. She would want me, her family and friends to all continue to live life and do everything that she can no longer do. And that is what we are all going to do. Everything I do will be in honour Courts and for Courts.

Brain tumours have 12% survival rate and it mostly affects children and adults under 40. Over 12000 people a year are diagnosed with a brain tumour including 500 children and teenagers, which is 33 young people a day.

5300 people lose their lives to a brain tumour each year. Brain tumours reduce life expectancy by 27 years which is the highest out of any cancer. Brain tumours cause many children to go blind, and for a short while Courtney experienced this.

More time and money needs to go into the research of brain tumours so that this senseless loss that my family and I are going through does not have to be experienced by other families. I will continue to raise awareness about brain tumours, try to help others experiencing this in any way I can. And anyone I know or meet will know my beautiful baby girls name.

Courtney Lily Hector I love you.

About the charity

We raise money solely to support The Royal Marsden, a world-leading cancer centre. From funding state-of-the-art equipment and ground-breaking research, to creating the very best patient environments, we will never stop looking for ways to improve the lives of people affected by cancer.

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