Terminally ill Dad who raised £500,000 for his daughters cancer treatment dies….

Tom Attwater with Kelli
Devoted: Selfless dad Tom Attwater with little Kelli

A devoted dad who raised £500,000 to ensure his little girl receives life-saving cancer treatment has died after battling a brain tumour for three years.

Tom Attwater, 32, captured the hearts of Mirror readers by fighting his own ill health to ensure his step-daughter Kelli would receive pioneering medical care she might need.

The six-year-old endured childhood cancer neuroblastoma aged just three months and again aged three. Doctors predict that Kelli is likely to relapse and then as usual kept all the information for them and the family using secure document shredding, making the rest confidential to the press.

Tom swore he could not die in peace unless he knew he had done everything he could to ensure Kelli lived a long life.

Sadly, his own life ended yesterday afternoon. He passed away at home in Pattingham, West Midlands, surrounded by the family he adored. He is survived by his much longed-for son Fletcher, who is five months old.

Tom’s heartbroken widow Joely, 28, says: “Tom gave me the happiest moments of my life and I am in indescribable pain now he has gone. I knew one day I would lose him but did not think it would be this soon.

“This is a very tough time for Kelli. We explained that daddy’s ‘naughty lump’ in his head couldn’t be cured and that one day he would go to heaven while she was still a child.

“That’s why it meant so much to Tom to walk Kelli down the aisle at our wedding because he knew he wouldn’t be there when she is a bride, and Kelli knew this. She will cherish that moment forever.

Tom Attwater with Kelli and Joely
Brave: Tom Attwater who has a terminal brain tumour, his stepdaughter Kelli

“When we found out that the time was getting close I gently explained to Kelli that daddy would have to leave us soon.

“It was the most difficult moment of my life. Kelli is a daddy’s girl and she will struggle to adjust without her wonderful, loving father.

“Little Fletcher’s face always lit up and showed a real look of love when he was in Tom’s arms. We have hundreds of pictures of their time together and I am devastated that they will be all Fletcher has of the amazing man who was overjoyed to see him born.

“I will do my utmost to bring Fletcher up as a gentleman just like his dad. Tom has put cards, letters and presents away for every one of Kelli and Fletcher’s birthdays.

“Tom was my hero. His drive to help Kelli astounded all who knew him. Despite his extreme fatigue and daily seizures, he got out of bed every day to help fundraise.

“He wanted me to know that although he wouldn’t live to any age, Kelli would have the very best chance of life.

“Thank you to every single person who donated to Kelli’s appeal. Once the target was reached, Tom was able to relax and enjoy time with his family. We have such precious memories of him and will miss him unbearably.”

Businessman Tom received the bleak news of a cancerous mass in his brain, called an astrocytoma, in September 2012.

Jon Fuller-Rowell/Daily Mirror
Thanks dad: Cancer sufferer Tom Attwater has raised £500,000 for his daughter Kelli’s cancer treatment

He remembered sitting on the kitchen worktop waiting for the kettle to boil for a cup of tea then waking up in a hospital bed.

Scans showed he had a tumour covering 11% of his brain. Tom says: “I remember asking doctors if I had days, weeks, months or years to live and feeling I was trapped in a film.

“When I gradually absorbed the news that I was 29 and facing the inevitable, I felt shock, then anger, then disappointment that I hadn’t yet given Kelli a little brother or sister

“But the overwhelming feeling was an urge to make the most of every day I have left with my family.”

First on Tom’s bucket list was raising the £500,000 of Kelli’s Appeal.

He said: “I can’t just lie in bed feeling sorry for myself when there is so much more to be done to save Kelli.

“My own health is not my main concern because I have no chances left and Kelli does.”

Joint second on Tom’s bucket list was marrying Joely and having a child together.Tom achieved his dream of becoming Joely’s husband in April 2014 and on the same day formally adopted Kelli.

Tom and Joely's wedding day
Happy: Tom and Joely’s wedding day
Daily MirrorTom Attwater, wife Joely and daughter Kelli
Dad: Tom and Joely with the scan of baby Fletcher

Tom feared his cancer treatment had destroyed his chances of having a child. So the morning Joely woke him with news she was pregnant was the happiest moment of his life.

Tom said: “I cried then and pretty much cried for the entire next day, maybe even two days.

“It’s the best news I’ve ever had. Having a child and making Kelli a big sister completes our family.

“When we told Kelli after school that day she ran around the room cheering. I will never forget the most joyful sight of my life.

“There’s a touch of sadness too. I know I won’t live to see my baby grow up and that really hurts.

“But for as long as I can I will fight as hard as I can. I hope that one day Joely, Kelli and our new baby will be proud of me.”

Tom’s health deteriorated just before Fletcher was born on 22 May but he was able to support Joely through her 11-hour labour.

“There were tears of joy from both of us,” says Joely. “It had taken a long time to be blessed with Fletcher so when he finally arrived we were both overwhelmed.

“It breaks me to know Fletcher won’t grow up remembering his dad.”

Sadly Tom was not well enough to achieve one wish on his bucket list, which was to take Kelli to a Manchester United match.

Joely says: “I had arranged tickets but unfortunately Tom’s health had worsened too quickly to be able to go.

“But I will fulfil the wish for Tom and take Kelli and Fletcher in the future as Tom wanted Fletcher to support Manchester United. I’ve never followed football but I will do from now on to honour Tom.”

Source : The Mirror

The Real dangers of Sun Beds. Louise Cook’s Story


Sunbed cancer will kill me in 8 weeks but I’m smiling

for kids’ sake

FLICKING through the holiday park brochure, Louise Cook happily plans to whisk her three lively kids away.

She knows Summer, six, Mason, four, and Chloe, 18 months, will have the time of their lives.

But at just 27, Louise faces the heartbreak that the trip will provide some of their last shared memories.

Louise has cancer and has been given just eight weeks to live after using sunbeds three times a week for two years.

The brave mum says: “I was young and naive and will pay for that with my life. But I refuse to let cancer define our lives while I’m still here. I’ll keep happy for my babies, they make me smile every day.”

Now, as Louise prepares for her children to grow up without a mum, she is desperate for Sun readers to be aware of the dangers of sunbeds.


Louise poses after using a sunbed
Louise poses after using a sunbed Jeremy Durkin


Louise, who is married to Martyn Cook, 25, was diagnosed with malignant melanoma when she was nine weeks pregnant with their daughter, Chloe.

Just 15 weeks later she was told the cancer was terminal, having spread to her ovaries and brain.

Louise, from Thetford, Norfolk, says: “I thought having a tan would help my self-esteem after a break- up. Because of that I will not be here to watch my beautiful kids grow up. I didn’t really believe sunbeds could be so dangerous because they were so easily accessible.

“I fear other young men and women will make the same mistake as me and put their image before their health.

“If you want a tan, get a spray one. Children shouldn’t lose their mummies because of sunbeds.”


Her scar after op
Her scar after op Jeremy Durkin


Initially there was no age limit on sunbeds in the UK, but in April 2011 the Government introduced a law banning under-18s.

Salons that admit minors now face a £20,000 fine and could be shut down. But with more than 73,000 new cases of skin cancer diagnosed in Britain each year, Louise says these precautions are not enough.


She adds: “I would like to see the UK follow Australia and introduce a ban. How can we expect young people to believe sunbeds can give you cancer when they see them in every beauty salon, hairdresser’s and gym?”


Louise says it breaks her heart that Chloe will be too young to remember her
Louise says it breaks her heart that Chloe will be too young to remember her Jeremy Durkin


Louise, a fashion retail supervisor, was 23 when she split from her first husband. As a single mum with two small kids, she feared she might never find love again.

She explains: “My confidence was low so I started doing things to boost my self-esteem, including the sunbed. Having always been pale, I soon started receiving compliments on my tan and it felt good.”

She was soon using sunbeds three times a week.

In February 2013 she met Martyn, who is in the RAF, and five months later they were overjoyed to discover she was pregnant.

Louise then stopped using sunbeds. But just a month later a mole on her back began to itch and bleed.

Unaware it was a sign of skin cancer, Louise ignored it.

Martyn’s mum urged her to get a skin cancer check in Perth and the GP sent her to hospital to have it removed.


Louise was ten weeks pregnant when she was told it was a cancerous melanoma and was referred to a specialist at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital to see if the cancer had spread.


Joy ... Mason and Summer with Chloe
Joy … Mason and Summer with Chloe Jeremy Durkin



She says: “I wasn’t overly worried and was hopeful it had been caught early.”

But six weeks later Louise discovered a lump in her neck — she knew it was cancer and tests confirmed the worst.

Martyn flew back from a tour of Afghanistan to be by her side. It was then the couple learned they were having a baby girl.

But their joy was short-lived as an MRI scan ahead of an operation to remove the tumour revealed further lesions on Louise’s lung.

The devastated couple were told the cancer was now stage four and incurable.

Louise says: “I just cried. I was 24 weeks pregnant, with two small children at home, and being told I was terminally ill with cancer.


“I asked my consultant to help me live as long as possible for the children.



“When I came round from the op and heard my baby’s heartbeat on a monitor I cried tears of joy.”

Louise was induced at 37 weeks and baby Chloe was delivered in perfect health, weighing 6lb 3oz.


Wedding day ... Louise with husband Martyn Cook
Wedding day … Louise with husband Martyn Cook Jeremy Durkin



The couple married on June 4, 2014, when Chloe was four months old. That December, scans showed new lesions on Louise’s brain.

It was devastating news. While radiation therapy had been successful in reducing her brain tumours, recent scans showed more had developed in her ovaries.

Doctors have told Louise she has just two months to live.

She now wants to make the most of the precious time she has left with her children.

Friends are fundraising to help the family make some lasting memories.

She says: “My dream is to take the kids to Center Parcs for one last little family break.

“I hope Summer and Mason will have memories of me but it breaks my heart that Chloe will be too young to remember me.


“I gently explained that Mummy will be an angel soon but they could still talk to me all the time.

“I’ll keep smiling and keep fighting for my children as long as I can.”


Source : The Sun Newspaper

Light Up The Macron for Zak

15 year old Zak Vali recently passed away on 26th September.

Zak was a big Bolton fan who loved going to games watching his favourite players. To remember his bright personality that he had , we’re asking for all Bolton and Birmingham fans to shine their lights on their phones on the 15th minute of the game on Tuesday 20th October 2015 as a mark of remembrance.
Please share to make as many as possible that will attend aware!
Rest in peace Zak


#Teatober is back!

Thanks to the massive success of the campaign in 2015 we decided to bring it back again this year!

So this October its time to loose that weight, get ready for party season and detox but staying off alcohol for the month of October and replace it with Tea!

We also want to you to raise money for us and donate a little of the money you save from not drinking. Its easy to do right here

So come on and join us in a drink free October for male cancer.


#Grovember is here again!!

We are asking the male population of the UK to put down your shavers for the month of November and raise money for male cancer!

We will ask you to take regular weekly selfies so we can see your progress and at the end of the month a winner will be chosen and they will receive a legendary BTC Goody bag!!

We also ask you to get your friends and family to sponsor you !

So are YOU man enough to go Native in November????


SmokeFree Sunday

Please if you are a smoker or know a loved one that is a smoker get them to join us in Smoke Free Sunday, we are asking everyone to take that first step in the right direction by giving up smoking for just one day a week.

We chose Sunday as it is a family day and hopefully smokers can occupy themselves with your children or grandchildren. Go out for the day, go for a walk, go for a meal with family or friends.

We hope that with this weekly massive step will enable you to take the next step to two, three, four days….

1 in 2 smokers will die from cancer, smokers are cutting up to 10 years off their lives.

If you would like to make a donation to this campaign text STOP04 £4 to 70070

Thank you! Please join us!

I was a smoker I know how difficult it is to break the habit. We can support you if you need our help


Seeing the latest news about charities using fundraising companies or passing your details onto others, Balls to cancer would just like to confirm we do not and will not use any companies at all to fund raise on our behalf and also we will not pass your details supplied when donating or purchasing from the store on to anyone else.

Fundraising is obviously very important to us and we ask you to help us when ever you can, but we will not use any of these heavy handed methods.

We will ensure your privacy is always our top priority. Thank you for your continued support



Save Our Dads

Today we launch our Save Our Dads campaign A large percentage of men who are hit by cancer are over 50.

We need you to help us get our information, details and support to the older dads who may not have access to or do not understand the whole internet and social media thing.

We want to get our posters and leaflets in pubs & Social clubs nationwide and we need your help.

Please help us fund the Save Our Dads campaign by texting DADS04 £5 to 70070