Tributes to a Malton teen
12:00am 7th March 2012
The memory of a Malton teen's being used as a lifeline for others.
Laura Robertson Tierney died last Thursday from a brain tumour.
Now her friend Ryan is attempting to skateboard from Malton to Scarborough and back again in a record time.
He's raising money and awareness of Laura's foundation 'Louby's Lifeline'.
Background to challenge
On Saturday 5th May 2012 Ryan Swain from Malton, North Yorkshire will be taking to the streets, going against the clock to set a new record of 52 miles, Which is 2 full marathons, from Malton to Scarborough and back again on just a regular Skateboard in only 12 hours time. It's all to raise money and awareness for the incredibly, astonishing foundation & charity Louby's Lifeline/Brain Tumor Research Yorkshire.
Ryan's relentless determination to give something back to other peoples lives who aren't has fortunate as himself will guide him through what is going to be an extremely pressuring and exhausting expedition. The challenge entails covering 50 miles in under 12 hours on a regular skateboard with just and adjudicator and friends and family following him. Tragically Laura past away on Thursday 29th February 2012 she was only 18 and she will always be in my heart and in the heart of the town and local community. A hero is somebody who is selfless, who is generous in spirit, who just tries to give back as much as possible and help people. A hero to me is someone who saves people and who really deeply cares. Each happiness of yesterday that they provide is a memory for tomorrow and I'm sure we all have our own endless supply thanks to Louby, she was everyone's friend.
About Louby's Lifeline
At 17 Louby aka Laura Robertson Tierney collapsed at work and was diagnosed with two brain tumours in her brain stem. Life changing surgery and radiotherapy have left Louby with a long road to recovery. This bright, determined young woman has put her own problems to one side and with her family and friends' support is raising funds to support Brain Tumour Research and Support across Yorkshire.
Laura's Story - a tribute from her mum (Written by Emma Robertson-Tierney)
A bright, strong-willed 17 year old, studying English Literature, accounting and psychology at Norton college sixth form where she loved to socialise with her friends.
After completing a hard year at college she wanted to start all over again and study health and social studies at Scarborough to then go onto university to become a primary school teacher.
Bubbly, humorous and always making people laugh - there was never a dull moment in Louby's life. Even in her sleep I caught her and Amber her best friend, chattering away to each other. There was no stopping them when they were together and no matter what has happened, they are still like that. INSEPERABLE!
On the 10th of October 2010 Lou started going out with her long term friend Jaden who has stuck by her through her illness and been there when she needed him the most.
She also met Cheryl, her other "best friend to be" at Norton college. She managed to keep her in-line in most lessons and Cheryl has been another star when she decided to kick off our fundraising.
Lou has always been very sporty and enjoys trying out new things. She was the first girl to join the Woodleigh school football team. She enjoyed a school skiing trip in April 2010, was part of the tag rugby team and the school hockey captain for three years as well as a keen netball player - there was nothing Louby wouldnâ€™t try!
Outside college, Lou was always on the go - working and her busy social life. She enjoyed her job at the local Italian restaurant where she began learning the lingo as well joining her friends and doing what she did best; socialising.
Suddenly, on the 16th April 2011, our lives changed dramatically. Louby collapsed at work and was taken to York General where she had an MRI scan. The results revealed two Ependymoma tumours in Lou's brain stem.
Upon diagnosis, Lou was asked to be a living donor for Brain Tumour Research and agreed to donate her tumours.
Louby was then transferred to the Leeds General Infirmary (LGI) Neurosurgical unit for surgery. Following the operation it was decided a second op was needed, her scans were sent around the world and surgeons in Toronto, Canada put forward an operation plan to Leeds Neurosurgeon, Paul Chumas. Paul pulled together a team of five surgeons and led them through the 18 ½ hour operation. Lou came through, but was on a ventilator and had paralysis down the left side of her body, and right side of her face.
In the coming weeks, Lou developed two strains of meningitis and had to have a tracheotomy fitted. Slowly the feeling to her left hand side began to return. Lou then had six weeks to prepare to transfer from the LGI to St James Institute of Oncology for a daily six and a half week course of radiotherapy treating her spinal column and brain.
Lou's determination has made her fight everyday to continue with her rehabilitation and recovery from surgery whilst coping with radiotherapy treatment. Every day holds a new challenge and every day is a struggle.
The side effects from the therapy have a huge impact, it will be a long road to recovery and the journey is only just beginning.
Louby wanted to do something positive and decided to work with her surgeon's charity, Brain Tumour Research and Support across Yorkshire. We have set up a fund called Louby's Lifeline to fund research and support others who find themselves in a similar situation. We realise that brain tumours happen to anyone, at any age and literally stop you in your tracks. Research is poorly funded with less than 1% of funds raised for research into cancer are devoted to brain cancer.
Louby's friends and family have been amazing, supporting us both, and organising some brilliant fundraising and awareness events. We are both very touched and grateful for their support.
We cannot thank the staff at the LGI and Jimmy's enough; they have all been so wonderful and a true credit to their professions, without them neither of us would be where we are today.
This is a devastating disease that affects every part of you. As a mother watching her child go through this ordeal is agonising. We pray for a treatment to be found that is less punishing and aggressive, that will contain the tumours and let Louby get on with living the life she had, and the one she deserves.
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