A CLACKMANNAN mother hopes to thank the charity who supported her son through brain cancer by completing a charity firewalk later this year.

Fiona Conaghan has vowed to give something back to Clic Sergeant by walking across a bed of hot coals in Glasgow this October.

The 49-year-old will be raising money for the charity, which has been there for her son Stuart and the family over the last five years.

She said: "Whilst Stuart was in and out of the hospital he was supported by Clic Sergeant. They've been so great, they even had a support worker there for him when he was diagnosed.

"I saw this event was taking place and thought it would be a good way to give back and say thanks for what they have done.

"The soles of my feet are like leather so I'm hoping that will help me on the day. But when you consider what Stuart has been through, this should be a piece of cake – a walk in the park."

Fiona said her "world fell apart" when her doctors found a massive brain tumour on the back of Stuart's head when he was just 17.

He had originally been misdiagnosed, with his symptoms being put down to viruses and an ear infection.

However, by the time he was admitted to hospital, the family were told that Stuart was "very close to death" due to the pressure that had built up on his brain.

There followed numerous surgeries, radiotherapy and eight months of chemo.
Things appeared "fine and dandy" until the youngster then suffered a relapse in January 2014, when doctors found another mass near the scar from his original surgery.

And while some doctors claimed it was a cyst that would go away on its own, Stuart's own consultant found that, unusually, it was a tumour which had been showing underneath the skin.

After watching her son go through second round of operations and therapy, Fiona was hoping to find some way to thank those who had supported him over the last five years.

She said: "At the moment, Stuart is doing quite well. We're awaiting the results of a scan that should tell us more.

"It's the side effects that are the main bugbears of any cancer treatment. He has difficulty walking because of his back and some of the medicine made his feet really sore.

"He also has trouble sleeping; it can be a nightmare.

"Stuart was so young when he was diagnosed – he fell ill at around his 17th birthday.

And having to go through all that...he's really missed out on a lot of his youth. He's had to mature really quickly because of it.

"But even through all of that he's always smiling; always in good spirits."

Anyone looking to aid Fiona's efforts can visit her crowdfunding page at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Fiona-Conaghan