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Teenager cleared of cancer after weekly’s appeal pays for treatment

Bryoni appeal

A teenager has been given the all-clear from cancer after an appeal in a weekly newspaper raised funds to send her to the United States for life-saving treatment.

The Dover Mercury launched an appeal last August to raise cash to allow Bryoni Millar, 19, to undergo proton therapy for a brain tumour.

Readers donated more than £2,000 to pay for living expenses so Bryoni and her grandma could travel to the US for her treatment.

She spent more than 10 weeks in in Jacksonville, Florida, last year undergoing proton therapy, which dispersed the last of her tumour, and she has now been given the all-clear.

Bryoni’s ordeal began in 2013 when she was found unconscious in her bed by her grandma when visiting her in County Kerry, Ireland.

Surgeons had to operate to remove a large tumour surrounding her brain stem but a tiny piece was left because it was too close to her spinal chord to risk removing.

Bryoni’s mother Tara Bingham appealed for help through the Dover Mercury, an edition of the East Kent Mercury, last August and reporter Victoria Chessum wrote a series of stories, which led to donations of more than £2,000.

Bryoni returned from the US last October after her treatment, but has only just been given the all-clear after a mix-up with her scans.

Victoria said: “I have followed Bryoni’s story from start to finish and it has been really rewarding helping someone who was in desperate need of life-saving treatment.

“The power of the regional press is sometimes undermined, but this time, the Dover Mercury managed to touch the hearts of the community and afar which made the donations roll in.

“Being a journalist isn’t always easy, but it is stories like these that make you realise what a great profession it is.”

Bryoni, who now lives in County Kerry permanently, still has a residual tumour that has to be monitored by scans every six months, despite it being very small.

She said: “I am completely relieved. I had to wait so long and was starting to get paranoid but it’s a heavy weight lifted off my shoulders.

“Right now I’m just relaxing, there’s no more stress needed so I’m just enjoying myself.”

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  • September 2, 2015 at 1:11 pm

    At last a positive story aside from all the sackings gloom and hope she continues her good health.

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