Brain tumour survivor from Boxford, 21, urges public support for Cancer Research UK after reaching nine years in remission
A Boxford man, who turned 21 this month, has reflected on the significance of the milestone after remaining in remission from brain cancer for almost a decade.
At the age of five, Charlie Williams was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, an aggressive brain tumour, which affects around 55 children in the UK each year.
Following the diagnosis, Mr Williams underwent a life-saving operation to remove the tumour, before receiving radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
While undergoing treatment, Mr Williams, of Homefield, contracted meningitis, which he managed to recover from.
Reflecting on the illness, the 21-year-old said: “It’s something nobody should have to go through, but, unfortunately, the world is not that way and it was part of my life.
“It was something I had to fight for because there was no escape route, no quick fix, or easier way out – it’s something I had to take on day by day.”
Highlighting the devastating impact that the disease had on his childhood, Mr Williams, who works at Tesco supermarket in Springlands Way, said: “A five-year-old child should not be in a hospital bed with a drip line attached to them constantly.
“A five-year-old should be running around in the garden and playing with their friends; playing football, enjoying life and having ice-cream, making memories.”
Mr Williams’ illness was a traumatic experience for the whole family.
“My parents, my brother and my sisters didn’t know if I would make it, if I would survive cancer,” he said.
“The small little milestones of completing my radiotherapy and then my course of chemotherapy may not mean much to the average person but, to us, it was huge.”
Urging the public to pledge their support to Cancer Research UK, a charity which is dedicated to discovering a cure for the disease, Mr Williams added: “By boosting funding now, we can all help to lessen the future impact on patients.
“So I hope that people across Suffolk will be moved by the charity’s determination to carry on beating cancer and give what they can.”
More by this authorPriya Kingsley-Adam
This website and its associated newspaper are members of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO)