Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

In Memory of Fliss; the Teenage Cancer Trust Has Helped Countless Young Adults across the Region Get through the Horrific Disease. Jule Wilson Spoke to Two Families Touched by the Charity to See Exactly What It Means to Them Ahead of a Special Fundraising Concert This Weekend

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

In Memory of Fliss; the Teenage Cancer Trust Has Helped Countless Young Adults across the Region Get through the Horrific Disease. Jule Wilson Spoke to Two Families Touched by the Charity to See Exactly What It Means to Them Ahead of a Special Fundraising Concert This Weekend

Article excerpt

Byline: Jule Wilson

IT was in May this year that Felicity Graham lost her three-year battle against bone cancer.

The brave 22-year-old affectionately known by both family and friends as Fliss, suffered from one of the most aggressive but common cancers to strike young people, Osteosarcoma.

But her family, brothers Scott, 29, and Gareth, 26, along with their parents Christine, 57, and Gordon, 53, of Gilsland, Northumberland, remain in close contact with the Teenage Cancer Trust (TCT) charity and the Teenage Cancer Unit at Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary, which they say became like a second home to them while Fliss was ill.

Scott said: "We never knew such a great place existed until we had to go there - and we cannot sing the ward's praises enough. It was far more than a place where Fliss received treatment because it is so family friendly. Because patients live on the ward while they are receiving treatment, it has a homely atmosphere, and we even held Fliss' 20th birthday party and her graduation party there."

Fliss underwent 10 months of gruelling chemotherapy after being diagnosed with Osteosarcoma in her left leg when she was 19. She then spent 18 months in remission, but continued her involvement with teenage cancer patients at the RVI. She even helped organise last year's TCT 3 Bandstand, a major music event at the Sage Gateshead to raise money for the new Teenage Cancer Unit due to open at the RVI in 2009.

Scott added: "The kinds of opportunity that are given to the patients by the Trust are incredible. It means that even while they are undergoing treatment the teenagers are staying active and learning new skills. It's just such a special, special place, and it meant so much to Fliss to be involved with Bandstand.

"It was an amazing opportunity that she grabbed with both hands and it changed her point of view in terms of what she wanted to do as a career. …

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