Loved ones help raise £50,000 in memory of Leyland woman

Posted on - 19th August, 2022 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Charities, Health, Leyland, Preston News, South Ribble News
James and Charlotte on their wedding day

The friends and family of a woman who died in July following a brain tumour diagnosis earlier this year have raised £50,000.

32-year-old Charlotte Nicol died 13 weeks after her diagnosis and seven seven months after her wedding day.

Her husband James Nicol gave Cancer Research UK the donation in memory of his wife.

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Charlotte grew up in Leyland and began travelling when she was 20. She spent time in Australia and then moved on to New Zealand, where she met James, from Auckland in 2016. The couple got engaged in 2019 and moved back to the UK, living in London.

Shortly after her diagnosis at the beginning of April, Charlotte decided to set up a Go Fund Me page under the name Zero Sense of Tumour in aid of Cancer Research UK. Contributions from friends, family and colleagues came flooding in and the £50,000 target was reached shortly after she passed away.

James, said: “Charlotte was incredibly kind and caring and spent a lot of her free time helping other people. She set up the Go Fund Me page from her hospital bed the day after her first brain surgery, she just felt that she needed to do something.

“And Charlotte was adamant that any money donated would be used for research and treatments for all cancers, not just brain tumours which are relatively rare, she wanted the money to help as many people as possible.

“We got married in December in a small ceremony in Antigua. International travel restrictions had made it difficult to plan anything so we just said, ‘why not?’ And just went and did it, just the two of us, and it was brilliant.

“We hadn’t been married long when we both got Covid. Then we got over it and Charlotte kept on getting headaches and we just put them down to long covid for a while.

James and Charlotte Nicol

“She was still functioning brilliantly at this point, just a headache that did get worse and worse eventually. Initially, her GP said it could be down to stress and to take it easy. Then it all happened stupidly quickly.

“Charlotte got diagnosed on April 5th, it was a Tuesday, in the space of a day she suddenly started feeling really dizzy and seeing lights and then tripping over and she had this numbness all the way down one side of her body and she couldn’t walk.”

A CT scan revealed a tumour the “size of an orange” and Charlotte was diagnosed with grade four astrocytoma. In the space of six weeks, she underwent five brain operations including a craniotomy – which she had to be awake during – that removed 95 per cent of the tumour.

But as she was due to start radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment in June a scan showed the tumour had grown back significantly.

James added: “We went from a 12-month treatment plan, to another one which would be the shortest course of extreme radiotherapy we possibly could, to another plan where all that we could do was to try and maximise Charlotte’s quality of life, all within a few days.

“From there Charlotte didn’t want to continue with the treatment as it was just prolonging life in a way that was incompatible with her values and way of living and enjoying life. When they did the biopsy, they said the tumour would have probably been growing slowly for years.”

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Charlotte organised her own funeral and said goodbye to loved ones before passing away three weeks later, on July 7, at the Marie Curie Hospice in Hampstead near hers and James’s home.

James said: “I can’t do anything to change what has happened, but this is one thing I can do. I hope as many people as possible see the Go Fund Me page and continue to donate, however much they can, every penny counts to help research for everyone affected by cancer.”

Director of Philanthropy at Cancer Research UK Chris Gethin, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to James and every single person who contributed to this generous donation in memory of Charlotte. The overwhelming support the Go Fund Me page has received is a testament to how many people’s lives Charlotte touched. Our thoughts are with James and all Charlotte’s loved ones at this deeply sad time.

“One in two of us will get cancer in our lifetime and every step we make towards beating cancer relies on vital donations. We’ve come so far but still have further to go and this donation will enable us to continue making pioneering discoveries in the future to accelerate progress and improve cancer survival to 3 in 4 by 2034.”

Visit Go Fund Me page to make a donation in memory of Charlotte or go to the Cancer Research website for more information on offering regular support.

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