Toddler's death was not in vain, says mum

The Bolton News: Clair Beswick with daughter Lily in 2012 Clair Beswick with daughter Lily in 2012

BRAVE Clair Beswick is determined her daughter’s tragic death will not be in vain.

Little Lily Beswick lost her battle against cancer aged just 21 months.

Since her death in November, 2012, her mum has fundraised tirelessly.

Now she is urging Bolton mums, daughters, sisters and friends to make a defiant stand against cancer by entering the Race for Life 5k event at Leverhulme Park in Bolton on Sunday, July 6.

Mrs Beswick said: “We are so excited about celebrating Lily’s life by completing Race for Life. It is such an emotional event, but we remain grateful for the treatment Lily received.

“Thanks to the breakthroughs in research into cancer, we were able to spend a huge amount of time as a family and enjoyed another nine months of her life.”

It was just two weeks after Lily’s first birthday that her mum found a lump on her leg.

Following a scan, a biopsy and three weeks of waiting, Lily was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, a type of soft tissue tumour.

She was placed on a six-month course of chemotherapy treatment followed by surgery to remove the shrunken tumour.

Initially, treatment went well for Lily and doctors were confident of a positive outcome thanks to her age and the position of the tumour.

However, after completing her second course of chemotherapy, she developed a high temperature and breathing difficulties.

She was taken back to hospital and doctors discovered four new tumours on her lungs.

By this stage, Lily was on a life support machine and her parents, Clair and Kevin, had to take the agonising decision to turn the machine off.

The couple, who live in Capitol Close, Smithills, run a children’s nursery in Farnworth. They have two sons, Oliver and Rowan. Mrs Beswick will be taking part in Race for Life with a gang of family members, friends and colleagues called “Team Lily”.

Her mum, Lynda Twist, is going to volunteer at the event and give out medals to participants.

Carrie Murphy, Cancer Research UK’s Bolton events manager, said: “We’re calling on an army of feisty females to help us stop cancer in its tracks. Race for Life events are not competitive.

They are not about being fit or fast.

Instead, they are an amazing way to celebrate life but also remember those who have been lost to the disease.”

This year, organisers need 1,800 women and girls to stride out in Bolton to help raise £105,000.

To enter Race for Life’s 5k, 10k or Pretty Muddy events in the North West visit www.raceforlife.org or call 0845 600 6050.

To sponsor Clair Beswick text LILB98 to 70070.

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