Parents aim to raise funds and awareness of brain cancers

Emma Sim. Picture: submitted

Emma Sim. Picture: submitted

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A grieving mother and father have vowed to boost funding for research into brain tumours following the death of their 17-year-old daughter.

Emma Sim died aged 17, less than two years after first suffering a blinding headache which led to her diagnosis.

Now her parents, Heather and Graeme, have launched a fundraising campaign after learning of the high number of young people who die from this type of cancer – and the tiny proportion of funding that goes into research.

Mrs Sim, 46, of Peterhead, said her daughter put up a brave fight against cancer.

She said: “When Emma was diagnosed we were devastated and it was very scary. They say your life can change in a split second and it is true.

“Emma was brilliant, so brave and had the attitude that it had to had to happen to someone.

“She was unbelievable, going through an operation and chemotherapy, but never felt sorry for herself.

“When we read about the Brain Tumour Charity we realised that is it mostly funded by people like us, people who have lost their children.

“Brain tumours kill more children and young people under 40 than any other cancer, but it gets just 2 per cent of funding for cancer research.

“In a lot of cases, they don’t know why people get brain tumours. We just feel the profile of this needs to be raised.

“What has happened to Emma is absolutely heartbreaking. We want to help other families if we can.”

Friends and family have rallied to their cause, with Emma’s uncle raising £6,500 for the charity after cycling from Cambodia to Vietnam. Fashion shows have been held, home-made toffee sold and even a skydive completed in memory of Emma. Her sister Ellie, 14, is also preparing for a sponsored 10km run.

Emma first started to feel unwell when she was ­studying for her National 5 prelims.

Mrs Sim said her daughter loved to study and hoped to go to university.

Emma also enjoyed nothing more than getting together with her family and friends at the weekends.

Mrs Sim said: “Her family and her friends, that was her thing. She was just a really happy girl and her smile lit up the room. She had a lovely personality and everybody loved Emma.

“For your child never to have been ill and then told she has a brain tumour was absolutely devastating. And to watch one of your children suffer like that, well there is nothing harder.”

l More information can be found at www.justgiving.com/emma-sim17

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