Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 16th 2014 Contents A teenager with cancer who touched the hearts
of many in the United Kingdom with his tireless
fund-raising efforts died Wednesday at age 19,
his mother said via Facebook.
It is news that will sadden many supporters won
over by Stephen Sutton’s mix of determination,
generosity and good humour in the face of his ter-
While he lost the battle to stay alive, he achieved
a remarkable feat: Having set himself the challenge
of raising some US$17,000 for a teenage cancer
charity, he ultimately inspired over US$5.4 million
On his Web site, Stephen’s Story, he tells how
he was first diagnosed with cancer in 2010, at age
Dying teen’s bucket list to raise money
“In a weird way, I see my first cancer diagnosis
as a good thing. It was a huge kick up the backside.
It gave me a lot of motivation for life.”
He created a “bucket list” on Facebook of 46
things he wanted to do before he ran out of time.
“Some things on my bucket list include sky div-
ing. Crowd surfing in a rubber dinghy. Playing
drums in front of a huge crowd. I ended up doing
it live at Wembley. Hug an animal bigger than me.”
But, he says, as he checked off each item, some-
thing else happened.
“Since starting the bucket list, I’ve had people
come up to me and offer to raise funds for me. To
go on holiday or tick off a new item on my bucket
list. But I’ve actually refused. And decided to give
the money to charity instead.”
That decision led to a stupendous fundraising
effort that won him the backing of celebrities and
the general public, despite doctors telling him in
November 2012 that his illness was terminal.
On the Facebook page he set up to run that effort,
Stephen’s Story, he describes himself as a “teenager
with incurable cancer just trying to enjoy life as
much as possible, while raising funds for charity
to help others.”
And when his condition took a turn for the worse
this spring, the news made national headlines.
After rallying briefly, he was readmitted to a hos-
pital Sunday with breathing difficulties.
With typical fortitude, the last post he wrote
said: “Fingers crossed the issue will be resolved
and that I’ll be out of hospital soon, I’ll keep you
all updated with how I’m getting on.”
On Tuesday, a message on his Facebook page
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April 23, 2014
from his family said that his breathing
trouble was caused by the regrowth
of tumors blocking his airways and
that he was no longer able to com-
A day later, his mother posted: “My
heart is bursting with pride but break-
ing with pain for my courageous, self-
less, inspirational son who passed
away peacefully in his sleep in the
early hours of this morning, May 14.
“The ongoing support and out-
pouring of love for Stephen will help
greatly at this difficult time, in the
same way as it helped Stephen
throughout his journey. We all know
he will never be forgotten, his spirit
will live on, in all that he achieved
and shared with so many.”
Since his death was announced,
donations have poured in.
The money Stephen raised went to
the Teenage Cancer Trust, the charity
that helped him through each surgery
and each round of radiation and
chemotherapy he underwent during
nearly four years battling the disease.
Teen cancer sufferer dies after raising US$5.4m for charity
Stephen Sutton, 19, has died from incurable cancer.
He raised more than US$5.4 million in donations
through tireless fund-raising.
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