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The family of George Grant who died from a brain tumour last year aged just 26, have vowed to raise money in his name for vital research in to the disease.
A student at the prestigious Royal Ballet School, George was initially told he was suffering from cramp and epilepsy after he had a series of seizures. However following an MRI scan he was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour shortly before his 18th birthday.
George, from Moseley, underwent surgery and radiotherapy but was left with paralysis down his left side ending his dreams of being a professional ballet dancer.
Despite this George continued to live life to the full.
His wife Kelly said: “George learned to drive and successfully gained a degree in Sport and Exercise Science at Birmingham University. On July 21st 2012 we got married in the most beautiful ceremony shared with family and friends…. It was a perfect day!
“We got our first jobs, bought our first house and added to our family with our little puppy Bailey. We enjoyed family holidays and made the most of life. Life was fun, positive and full of hope.”
Sadly in 2013 George was given the news that his tumour had returned. Despite further surgery and chemotherapy George died in June last year at home surrounded by his family.
Now his family are hoping to improve the lives of others affected by brain tumours. They set up ‘The George Grant Superman Fund’ an official supporter group of The Brain Tumour Charity after George’s death.
“We wanted something positive to come out of all the devastation and we know it is just what George would have wanted.
“Despite his own struggles George was so determined to raise money and awareness, in order to help others going through similar tragedy.
“Throughout George's illness it became so apparent how underfunded brain cancer research is and how little progress has been made regarding prognosis and quality of life. This needs to change.
“I think of George every day and miss him so much. Coping with the pain of losing him is at times unbearable but by focusing on positive fundraising efforts I know we are continuing George’s fight.”
The fund has already raised almost £6,000 after Kelly took on a sponsored 13 mile row last year. Fundraising events this year include a Kilimanjaro trek and a dance gala.
Geraldine Pipping, The Brain Tumour Charity’s Director of Fundraising, said: “We are immensely grateful to George’s family for raising awareness and funds in the face of their own loss.
“We receive no government funding and rely 100% on voluntary donations, so it’s only through the efforts of George’s family and others like them that we can work towards our twin goals of doubling survival and halving the harm caused by brain tumours.
“Brain tumours are the biggest cancer killer of children and people under 40 in the UK and survival rates have not improved significantly over the last 40 years. We need to change that.”
For more information on the fund click HERE