Cancer family in fresh heartache

Samantha Reece with daughters Tianna, 3, Heaven, 12 weeks, and Skylar, 8
Samantha Reece with daughters Tianna, 3, Heaven, 12 weeks, and Skylar, 8

CANCER survivor Braiden Prescott’s family have been dealt a fresh blow after his auntie was struck down by the disease.

In a cruel twist Samantha Reece was diagnosed with thyroid cancer on the same day little Braiden was given test results confirming he was free of neuroblastoma.

Samantha, who gave birth to her third daughter, Heaven, three months ago, said: “When I was seven months pregnant I discovered a lump on my neck. Within two weeks doctors referred me as an emergency to Thomas Linacre.

“I needed an operation but I couldn’t have one as I was pregnant. At 36 weeks, I was induced and my baby struggled to feed. She was taken to the Rainbow Ward for a week.

“When she was four weeks old, I was taken to Wigan Infirmary and had the tumour and half the thyroid taken out. Within two weeks, results came back that I had cancer.

“I have to go to The Christie for a high dose of radiotherapy. I won’t be allowed near my children and partner for two weeks until it is all completed because it is too dangerous for them.

“That is going to hurt me more than having the operations. The children are the only thing keeping me going and to be isolated from everyone will be really hard.

“But the outcome is really good as this treatment has excellent success rates.”

The news came at a poignant time for Samantha, a nursery nurse, as cancer was firmly on the family’s mind as five-year-old Braiden still has regular check ups after he was cleared last September.

She said: “We are a close family and this has been really hard on us. It was all bittersweet as on the same day I got diagnosed, Braiden got his test results back from the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and everything was fine.

“But I was glad that it was me and not him, but it has been hard for Braiden’s mum, Stef, who is my cousin, as she has been getting over everything with Braiden and this happens.

“We keep thinking, what else is next?”