‘I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy’ – dad tells of shock after learning son has cancer

News: ‘I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy’ – dad tells of shock after learning son has cancer

Another Lincolnshire Highlights news story…

A dad has told of his shock after learning his 11-year-old son had an inoperable brain tumour.

The dad-of-two took his son, Nick, to get an eye test after noticing he was bumping into things.

But the father was left devastated after what he believed would be a routine check-up ended up with him being told his son was blind in his left eye.

And worse was yet to come as the tests showed that Nick had a cancerous brain tumour, which was later revealed to be germinoma – a type of brain tumour.

The family, from Lincoln, were dealt a further blow when they discovered the mass wasn’t operable due to its location and Nick was put through cycles of radiotherapy and chemotherapy to treat and shrink the tumour.

 

“It’s an experience I wouldn’t wish on anyone,” said his dad, who asked to be identified only by his professional game streaming name, Red Dead Colonel.

“From a parent’s point of view it is the worst thing you can go through.”

He added: “It was complete and utter shock. It was disbelief at first.

“Its natural emotions I think – you don’t want to believe it at first.

“The next is accepting which causes fear that your kid could die in a matter of months. When that hits in you do go to pieces.

Pictured is Red Dead Colonel
Pictured is Red Dead Colonel
(Image: Red Dead Colonel)

The dad, who a full-time game streamer, says the next few months were difficult as he struggled to stay strong for his son.

He said: “Somehow you find the strength to push forward and help your child.

“You don’t want your kid going to pieces.

“The kids seem to deal with it a lot better than the parent. They are a lot more resilient.

“Nick was cracking jokes.”

After the treatment was finished, the family faced an anxious wait where every three months they would visit the doctors to see if Nick’s tumour had grown.

Red Dead Colonel has spoken about his son Nick's cancer battle after doing a live gaming stream to raise money for Make a Wish Foundation
Red Dead Colonel has spoken about his son Nick’s cancer battle after doing a live gaming stream to raise money for Make a Wish Foundation
(Image: Red Dead Colonel)

To their relief after 10 years of worry the family were overjoyed after doctors gave Nick the all-clear.

“2016 was when we got the all clear for the first time. He was 21 at the time,” his dad said.

“It was the first time in a long time I broke down entirely.

“There was so much pent up emotion from all that time as you learn to live with it during those 10 years.

“When they tell you it’s all clear and over that’s where the emotion all came out for us.”

Red Dead Colonel has spoken about his son Nick's cancer battle after doing a live gaming stream to raise money for Make a Wish Foundation
Red Dead Colonel has spoken about his son Nick’s cancer battle after doing a live gaming stream to raise money for Make a Wish Foundation
(Image: Red Dead Colonel)

Nick is now a happy 24-year-old and while his ordeal has left him registered blind, he has proven doctors wrong by going on to university in Lincoln to study computer science.

His dad, meanwhile, has become a professional game streamer after launching his channel Red Dead Colonel after the online part of Red Dead Redemption Two came out in December last year.

The character, influenced by KFC’s Colonel Sanders, goes around the game helping other players.

It has gathered thousands of followers on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and the dad has used his following to do sponsored live streams to help raise money for the Make A Wish Foundation – a charity very dear to his heart.

The charity was there for Nick during his treatment, and offered to fund his desire to go to Disneyland Paris.

Brain tumours are graded according to how fast they grow and how likely they are to grow back after treatment. Grade one and two tumours are low grade, and grade three and four tumours are high grade.

There are two main types of brain tumour:

  • non-cancerous (benign) brain tumours  – are low grade (grade one or two), which means they grow slowly and are less likely to return after treatment
  • cancerous (malignant) brain tumours  – are high grade (grade three or four) and either start in the brain (primary tumours) or spread into the brain from elsewhere (secondary tumours); they’re more likely to grow back after treatment

Symptoms of a brain tumour

The symptoms of a brain tumour vary depending on the exact part of the brain affected. Common symptoms include:

  • severe, persistent headaches
  • seizures (fits)
  • persistent nausea, vomiting and drowsiness
  • mental or behavioural changes, such as memory problems or changes in personality
  • progressive weakness or paralysis on one side of the body
  • vision or speech problems

See your GP if you have the above symptoms, particularly if you have a severe and persistent headache. You may not have a brain tumour but these types of symptoms should be checked out.

If your GP can’t identify a more likely cause of your symptoms, they may refer you to a neurologist (a brain and nervous system specialist) for further assessment and tests, such as a brain scan.

Information courtesy of NHS

 

Fate intervened and Nick was deemed unfit to fly just days before the trip, so instead the charity took the family to London to stay in a five-star hotel as well as gifting them countless perks around the city.

As a further treat, once Nick was cleared to fly, the charity still took the family to Disneyland.

“I think it [the charity] is so important having been in that situation,” the dad said.

“There is no light only darkness which really helps you find hope when you have had lots of bad news.

“You get to experience them [the wishes] as a family.

“I have the utmost of respect for the charity and that is why we are official fundraisers.”

 

Red Dead Control’s most recent effort saw the dad and his son team up with HubbleTroubleTV to do a sponsored stream .

The event was held on Saturday, September 7, and was even endorsed by actor Roger Clark who voices Arthur Morgan – the lead character in the game.

The stream is still available to be viewed and donations are still open.

A link to the Go fund me page can be found here



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