A CIRENCESTER boy who discovered he had a brain tumour just three days after starting secondary school is raising money to help others in the same situation.
Edward Simpson, 12, started at Marling School in September, but has spent the year since in and out of hospital.
He will have had nine operations by the time his treatment for the grade four tumour is finished, and is still in a wheelchair much of the time, yet is determined to help others like him.
His mother Anne said: “Edward has spent the most horrific year in and out of hospital having surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
“The situation, which has been terrifying for our whole family, was made even worse due to the isolation enforced by Covid.
“However, rather than spend the year feeling sorry for himself, Ed has been thinking about how to raise money for brain cancer research.”
Speaking about his experience Edward, a former pupil at Powell’s Primary School in Cirencester, said: “We spent months in hospital away from my family with only the odd weekend trip home.
“I was only allowed one parent at a time with me in hospital and my sister has never been able to visit which was really tough.
“This whole experience has been really difficult, not just on me but on my whole family, and we hate to think of anyone going through a similar situation in the future.”
Edward decided to raise money for brain cancer research after learning that, despite brain cancers being the biggest cancer killers of children and adults under 40, research spending is comparatively low.
A keen sportsman, Edward previously played rugby with the youth section of Cirencester Rugby Football Club, something he will no longer be able to do. However, as a player for Tetbury Town Youth Football Club and a fan of Forest Green Rovers and Manchester United, he is determined to get himself back on the footy pitch.
Edward is therefore launching ‘100 strikes at cancer’ , a football-based challenge where he aims to raise £100,000 for Brain Tumour Research.
More than £10,000 has already been raised.
“I miss playing football,” he said.
“I am therefore aiming to get myself up and moving about enough to score 100 goals.
“I am hampered at the moment as the surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy made me so ill that I am still in a wheelchair for much of the time – but I have decided that this won’t stop me – it’s just another hurdle to overcome.
“It may take me a while, but I am determined to get there.
“I will keep going, with however many fundraising activities it takes, until I reach my goal.
Please – if you can donate – however small – I would be really grateful.
“Brain cancers are devastating and the treatments are brutal. We need to find better ways to manage and cure these horrible diseases.
“I don’t want any other child or adult to go through this.”
Donate at justgiving.com/fundraising/100EdwardSimpson