Schoolgirl Georgina Rich, 16, was diagnosed with a brain tumour after a routine check up at a Sudbury opticians last spring.
After complaining of headaches, she had the check-up and was immediately referred to hospital. Ten operations later, including one to remove the tumour, she ended up having a titanium plate fitted in her skull.
But the Thomas Gainsborough School student has fought back from her illness to do exceptionally well at school and is one of the first young people to be nominated for the annual Sudbury Rotary Young Citizens Award – which is supported by the Free Press, Waitrose, AFC Sudbury and the Mackman Group – to recognise the achievements of the town’s young people.
Georgina, from Grantham Avenue, Great Cornard, is described as “truly remarkable” by her home tutor Sue Heaton, who lives nearby in Davidson Close.
She said: “From the outset, it was clear how much this illness had impacted on her.
“She struggled to walk and needed a wheelchair to leave the house. Academically, she struggled with spellings and language work that had once come to her quite easily.
“Despite this, I was amazed at her focus and determination to complete her GCSEs.”
In two terms, Georgina completed work that students are expected to complete in two years and, during the summer holidays, she learned she had got good enough grades to go to Suffolk One College, where she is now studying IT.
Sue added: “She is a truly remarkable young woman who, through hard work, has created a very promising future for herself.”
Sudbury Rotary Club has full details of the award, including the deadline for entries and award ceremony, on its website at www.sudburyrotary.com.