Mum, 50, dies from breast cancer just 16 months after her first son is born

Caroline Summers and her son Clarke

Mum, 50, dies from breast cancer just 16 months after her first son is born

First published in News
Last updated
The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author Exclusive by , business editor

IT was a dream come true for Caroline Summers when she discovered she was pregnant, aged 49, after 30 years of marriage.

But her joy turned to a nightmare when she was diagnosed with terminal breast cancer just before her son, Clarke, was born.

Mrs Summers lost her battle against the disease last month — just 16 months after her baby son was born.

Her grieving husband, Derek, is now trying to rebuild his life as a single parent.
He has spoken of his devastation that his wife has missed out on so many milestones in their son’s early life.

The 53-year-old of Clayton Street, The Haulgh, said: “It turned out to be a very aggressive form of cancer.

“After giving birth she had a mastectomy and then the lymph nodes under her left arm were removed. But it had already spread to her liver.

“The medical teams at Bolton and MRI tried desperately to save her life, but in the end it was not possible.

“When we finally realised there was nothing that could be done, it was awful. She had gone through hell and she wasn’t even going to see Clarke walk.

“It was so bad, if you were watching a film with a storyline like ours, you would turn it off because you’d think it was too far-fetched.

“Being told you are pregnant when you had been childless for as long as we were, you would think we were the happiest people in the world, but all that was taken away when she was diagnosed with cancer a month before Clarke was born.”

Mrs Summers, a former air stewardess, died on March 7. Mr Summers worked as a salesman but is no longer working and is concentrating on bringing up his son.

He said: “My focus now is on giving Clarke the sort of life his mother would have wanted him to have.”

Mr Summers is planning to sell his home in Bolton and move back to Sale in south Manchester, where he was brought up.

Comments (19)

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9:31am Sat 26 Apr 14

Chrome1 says...

I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.
I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it. Chrome1
  • Score: -188

10:08am Sat 26 Apr 14

vicric87 says...

A few years ago I would have ignored this story because tragedy happens all the time. But now I can relate. I'm 8 months pregnant and recently found a lump which, thankfully, has gone away now. I was terrified and it's a really heartbreaking thing to happen. I can only imagine her pain of knowing her wouldn't get to see hee child grow up. So sad.
A few years ago I would have ignored this story because tragedy happens all the time. But now I can relate. I'm 8 months pregnant and recently found a lump which, thankfully, has gone away now. I was terrified and it's a really heartbreaking thing to happen. I can only imagine her pain of knowing her wouldn't get to see hee child grow up. So sad. vicric87
  • Score: 35

12:47pm Sat 26 Apr 14

Lancashire always says...

Chrome1 wrote:
I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.
Yes you are. And please keep your horrible thoughts to yourself.
[quote][p][bold]Chrome1[/bold] wrote: I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.[/p][/quote]Yes you are. And please keep your horrible thoughts to yourself. Lancashire always
  • Score: 43

2:04pm Sat 26 Apr 14

boltonnut says...

Sad story.
Sad story. boltonnut
  • Score: 6

3:23pm Sat 26 Apr 14

holloway_david says...

I RIP. My condolences to the family,

What is disgusting is an advert
for kitchens in amongst proper messages
I RIP. My condolences to the family, What is disgusting is an advert for kitchens in amongst proper messages holloway_david
  • Score: 30

3:37pm Sat 26 Apr 14

holloway_david says...

gusir2 wrote:
Kitchen Designer Birmingham .Thirty Ex Display Kitchens To Clear. www.exdisplaykitchen

s1.co.uk £ 595 Each with appliances.
You need to be ashamed for putting in this advert. There are other words to describe your action and one of them is "disgusting"; I will let other posters put in more appropriate words.
This poor family are grieving and you should respect the context of this story.
[quote][p][bold]gusir2[/bold] wrote: Kitchen Designer Birmingham .Thirty Ex Display Kitchens To Clear. www.exdisplaykitchen s1.co.uk £ 595 Each with appliances.[/p][/quote]You need to be ashamed for putting in this advert. There are other words to describe your action and one of them is "disgusting"; I will let other posters put in more appropriate words. This poor family are grieving and you should respect the context of this story. holloway_david
  • Score: 22

3:46pm Sat 26 Apr 14

Janch1 says...

gusir2 wrote:
Kitchen Designer Birmingham .Thirty Ex Display Kitchens To Clear. www.exdisplaykitchen

s1.co.uk £ 595 Each with appliances.
Cretin.
[quote][p][bold]gusir2[/bold] wrote: Kitchen Designer Birmingham .Thirty Ex Display Kitchens To Clear. www.exdisplaykitchen s1.co.uk £ 595 Each with appliances.[/p][/quote]Cretin. Janch1
  • Score: 20

3:51pm Sat 26 Apr 14

Janch1 says...

What a sad story. I wish Mr Summers all the best in bringing up his little one alone without his lovely wife. Life is so unfair for some people.
What a sad story. I wish Mr Summers all the best in bringing up his little one alone without his lovely wife. Life is so unfair for some people. Janch1
  • Score: 15

5:15pm Sat 26 Apr 14

mr.mark.c says...

Nasty horrible disease that I would not wish on my worse enemy :(
Nasty horrible disease that I would not wish on my worse enemy :( mr.mark.c
  • Score: 10

5:18pm Sat 26 Apr 14

What I think 222 says...

I have reported the kitchen seller, hopefully someone on the BN staff will see fit to remove it.
I have reported the kitchen seller, hopefully someone on the BN staff will see fit to remove it. What I think 222
  • Score: 11

5:30pm Sat 26 Apr 14

davidjb says...

i don't think it matters what age she is, whether she was 21 or 50 another little boy has lost his mother to cancer and to be fair it wouldnt matter if he was 16 years old. losing a parent isnt easy for anyone regardless of age
i don't think it matters what age she is, whether she was 21 or 50 another little boy has lost his mother to cancer and to be fair it wouldnt matter if he was 16 years old. losing a parent isnt easy for anyone regardless of age davidjb
  • Score: 12

5:32pm Sat 26 Apr 14

Comment777 says...

mr.mark.c wrote:
Nasty horrible disease that I would not wish on my worse enemy :(
I would, I do hope that this man and his beautiful son are able to move on with love in their hearts, never to forget their wife and mother, yet not grieve for too long as I am sure she would not have wanted this, only that they are happy and healthy...
[quote][p][bold]mr.mark.c[/bold] wrote: Nasty horrible disease that I would not wish on my worse enemy :([/p][/quote]I would, I do hope that this man and his beautiful son are able to move on with love in their hearts, never to forget their wife and mother, yet not grieve for too long as I am sure she would not have wanted this, only that they are happy and healthy... Comment777
  • Score: 6

6:36pm Sat 26 Apr 14

dennis11* says...

I too have reported the 'kitchen seller'.
Time we all stood up for what is acceptable in our society.
I too have reported the 'kitchen seller'. Time we all stood up for what is acceptable in our society. dennis11*
  • Score: 6

8:19pm Sat 26 Apr 14

RealisticMoi says...

Tragic and I wish the father all the wishes in the world.
Tragic and I wish the father all the wishes in the world. RealisticMoi
  • Score: 4

8:40pm Sat 26 Apr 14

HOOSIER says...

davidjb wrote:
i don't think it matters what age she is, whether she was 21 or 50 another little boy has lost his mother to cancer and to be fair it wouldnt matter if he was 16 years old. losing a parent isnt easy for anyone regardless of age
Your 100% right I lost my mum when I was 19 and I lost my dad when I was 24 it is hard and I wish father and son all the best for their future.
[quote][p][bold]davidjb[/bold] wrote: i don't think it matters what age she is, whether she was 21 or 50 another little boy has lost his mother to cancer and to be fair it wouldnt matter if he was 16 years old. losing a parent isnt easy for anyone regardless of age[/p][/quote]Your 100% right I lost my mum when I was 19 and I lost my dad when I was 24 it is hard and I wish father and son all the best for their future. HOOSIER
  • Score: 6

10:29pm Sat 26 Apr 14

Greasy Chip Butty says...

My thoughts and prayers with the family involved.
We all have to go sometime, we just don't know in what circumstances and when that'll be.
My thoughts and prayers with the family involved. We all have to go sometime, we just don't know in what circumstances and when that'll be. Greasy Chip Butty
  • Score: 3

4:04pm Sun 27 Apr 14

flyingdagger says...

Chrome1 wrote:
I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.
What on earth can you find in this story that would warrant a possible negative comment? Surely not the fact that the father has given up his job to look after his son? Please enlighten us.
And with regard to those that have reported the kitchen seller well good luck with that. I hope the Bolton News takes notice but after I contacted them at least twice about non existant moderating of posts and did not even get an acknowledgement then I'm not hopeful. Over 24 hours later and his post is still there. Bolton News you should be ashamed of yourselves.
[quote][p][bold]Chrome1[/bold] wrote: I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.[/p][/quote]What on earth can you find in this story that would warrant a possible negative comment? Surely not the fact that the father has given up his job to look after his son? Please enlighten us. And with regard to those that have reported the kitchen seller well good luck with that. I hope the Bolton News takes notice but after I contacted them at least twice about non existant moderating of posts and did not even get an acknowledgement then I'm not hopeful. Over 24 hours later and his post is still there. Bolton News you should be ashamed of yourselves. flyingdagger
  • Score: 13

12:12am Tue 29 Apr 14

wsw69 says...

Chrome1 wrote:
I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.
First and foremost is my thoughts are with Mr Summers and his son Clarke. All the very best to you both for the future. Time does heal.

Chrome1 - You really are pathetic at times, and this goes to prove it. I'm surprised your diabolical comment hasn't been removed
[quote][p][bold]Chrome1[/bold] wrote: I'm not heartless or anything and I hope the family copes with this tragedy, but in my personal opinion.......no I won't say it.[/p][/quote]First and foremost is my thoughts are with Mr Summers and his son Clarke. All the very best to you both for the future. Time does heal. Chrome1 - You really are pathetic at times, and this goes to prove it. I'm surprised your diabolical comment hasn't been removed wsw69
  • Score: 1

9:50am Tue 29 Apr 14

xadinalan says...

My sympathy goes out to Derek. I know what he will be going through asua similar tragedy happened to me, when my wife died, leaving me with our 2 years old daughter. It wasn't easy but it can be done. My daughter is now 24 years old and her mother would be proud of her. Help came from unexpected places and a big thank you goes to all family and friends that helped me along the way.
My sympathy goes out to Derek. I know what he will be going through asua similar tragedy happened to me, when my wife died, leaving me with our 2 years old daughter. It wasn't easy but it can be done. My daughter is now 24 years old and her mother would be proud of her. Help came from unexpected places and a big thank you goes to all family and friends that helped me along the way. xadinalan
  • Score: 0

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