Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 10°C


Stutton: Brave Sam Whitby, 17, overcomes brain tumour and ovarian cancer

16:24 17 June 2014

Sam Whitby

Sam Whitby

Brave Sam Whitby has had more obstacles to overcome in her life than other teenagers.

The 17-year-old was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2009 and underwent surgery to remove the growth, subsequently making a full recovery.

But last year the courageous student was dealt another blow when she was told she had ovarian cancer. “I thought ‘here we go again’,” Sam, a student at One sixth form centre in Ipswich, said.

“I knew I had to just think about getting through it again. I beat the brain tumour and knew I could win again.”

Sam, who lives in Stutton with parents Michelle and Douglas and two-year-old brother Kelan, was just 12 years old when she was old she had a brain tumour.

She added: “I had suffered from a lot of headaches and tiredness. My GP referred me to a paediatrician at hospital and from there I was sent for brains can which showed the growth.

“I had to have an operation to have the tumour removed. At 12 years old I think I just accepted it and put all my focus on getting through it.

“It’s been a very tough journey.”

But last September, she was sent to the Emergency Department at Ipswich Hospital suffering from debilitating abdominal pains and bloating.

After a series of tests, it was confirmed that Sam had ovarian cancer.

She underwent four gruelling rounds of chemotherapy between September and November last year at Addenbrooke’s Hospital and was given the all-clear a few months ago but still has to have regular tests and scans.

Sam’s illnesses has resulted in her school work being pushed back a year.

While her friends will soon be celebrating the end of their A-level exams, Sam will be preparing to start her A-level year in September.

“I’m starting my A2 year in September but all my friends are leaving and it’s frustrating that I’ve got to start again.

“I’ll be studying for A-levels in psychology, ancient history and graphic communications.”

She is hoping to go to university and eventually become a history teacher.

Having returned to One, Sam organised a fundraiser for the Teenage Cancer Trust and CLIC Sargent where staff and students were encouraged to pay money to wear wigs, hats and create unusual hairstyles.

“If it hadn’t been for the Teenage Cancer Trust, I would have been in a ward with adults at Addenbrooke’s and this would have made a difficult situation even more difficult.

“Teenagers fundraising for charities like this have been in the news recently because of the amazing efforts of Stephen Sutton. He was an inspirational figure and showed everyone the importance of the power of positive thought – no matter what the circumstances.”

1 comment

  • You are a brave girl and I wish you all the very best for the future. Young people like you, who have so much upheaval in their lives, make special adults. Enjoy your life and live it to the full!

    Report this comment


    Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

A woman was treated for minor injuries at the scene of a crash near the Copdock roundabout this afternoon.

There are long delays on the A14 eastbound at after Claydon this evening following an accident.

Rail travellers hoping to enjoy weekend days out in London in early 2017 are facing four months more disruption on the main line as Shenfield station is rebuilt.

An accident is currently blocking one lane of the A12 southbound in Capel St Mary.

Everyday our readers send in photos to iwitness24 that they have taken while out and about along the Suffolk coast, visiting one of our many beauty spots or while relaxing in their own gardens.

Corrie McKeague’s disappearance has left his family suffering an “indescribable” void in the 32 days since the RAF Honington airman vanished from the centre of Bury St Edmunds.

This week DAVID KINDRED takes a look at the early days of local radio in Ipswich and Suffolk.

A 65-year-old man has been charged with dangerous driving and failing to notify the authorities of a disability after a cyclist sustained life-threatening injuries in Ipswich.

A Suffolk animal lover has set up an organisation dedicated to the responsible breeding of ‘hybrid dogs’.

Military exercises will take place next week at a Suffolk air base.

Most read

Most commented


Show Job Lists

Topic pages


Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24