A North East woman walks tens of thousands of steps every day to raise money and awareness about her great-grandson’s brain condition.

Penny Sinclair, 66, from Ingleby Barwick in Stockton-on-Tees, is taking on the 10,000 steps a day challenge this February to raise money and awareness for the charity Brain Tumor Research after her great-grandson had diagnosed with a brain tumor.

Ms. Sinclair’s youngest great-grandson, Parker Stott, was diagnosed with astrocytoma in 2022 at the age of 2.

She said she was horrified to learn of Parker’s disease and despite having difficulty walking after three knee replacements, felt she had to take on the challenge to raise money to find a cure for the disease .

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She said: “It was just horrible to know that Parker had a brain tumour. No one, especially a small child, should have to go through this.

“When I was a bit younger I was a fitness fanatic, but I had three knee replacements and was in a car accident.

“Sometimes I can’t walk at all, so I’ll do it on the treadmill and in the pool.

“It’s a really big challenge for me, but I want to do my part to raise vital money to find a cure.”

Parker was initially diagnosed with the disease after suffering from stomach problems and difficulty going to the toilet.

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After he became weak and lethargic, he was taken to North Tees University Hospital, where an MRI revealed Parker had a brain tumour.

Ms Sinclair said on New Year’s Day her great-grandson felt incredibly unwell and not himself because he had to be carried everywhere.

She said: “Not long after that he started vomiting constantly and had a high fever,” Penny added.

“He was losing weight; he weighed only 10 kg, and his clothes were hanging on him.”

After a scan revealed the tumour, he was taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) Great Northern Children’s Hospital in Newcastle, where surgeons managed to remove most of the tumour.

“This brain tumor just hits you out of nowhere. It’s such a terrible thing for my great-grandson to do,” Ms Sinclair added.

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“To see this boy go through this is absolutely horrific. Parker now gets an MRI every three months.

“It’s such a nervous time and I always hope the tumor hasn’t spread.”

Matthew Price, community development manager at Brain Tumor Research, said: “We are so sorry to learn of Parker’s diagnosis, especially at such a young age.

“We are so grateful to Penny for taking part in February’s 10,000 Steps a Day challenge, as it is only with the support of people like her that we can continue our research into brain tumors and improve outcomes for patients like Parker who have to fight this terrible disease.”


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