Gil­lian Wal­cott loses bat­tle against can­cer

The Star (Jamaica) - - FRONT PAGE - AKINO MING STAR Writer

Gi l l i an Wal­cott, t he t eenager whose bat­tle with can­cer was high­lighted by THE STAR in De­cem­ber, has died.

Gil­lian died on De­cem­ber 20 last year at the age of 19.

On the ninth night af­ter her pass­ing, her fam­ily and friends gath­ered at her fa­ther’s house at Rho­den Cres­cent, Kingston 6.

With their minds en­rap­tured with all her un­ful­filled prom­ises, they ob­served the shafts of light from the lit can­dles at the be­gin­ning of the vigil her fa­ther Wayne Wal­cott had or­gan­ised, but couldn’t at­tend be­cause he was too emo­tion­ally dis­traught.

“I couldn’t stay,” an emo­tional Wal­cott told THE STAR. “I did the prepa­ra­tion and ev­ery­thing but I couldn’t stay. Mi get too sad when mi think bout her.”

Gil­lian bat­tled chon­drosar­coma, a type of can­cer com­posed of cells derived from trans­formed cells that pro­duce car­ti­lage.

She fought well through­out the 13 months the ill­ness de­bil­i­tated her body, ac­cord­ing to the nurses who at­tended to her.

PUR­SUE HER DREAMS

In the last month be­fore she passed, she reached out to THE STAR for as­sis­tance to bring aware­ness to a GoFundMe ac­count she had set up to raise money to fi­nance her hos­pi­tal bills which were bal­loon­ing.

She told THE STAR she still had hopes of con­tin­u­ing to pur­sue her dreams of go­ing to univer­sity and be­com­ing a reg­is­tered nurse, even though some­one had whis­pered to her that the doc­tors had done all they could.

“I think I am go­ing to make it through,” Wal­cott said at the time.

At the vigil, her sis­ters, Monique and Kaycean, among oth­ers re­flected on the things Gil­lian wanted to do.

“I know she al­ways wanted to be a nurse and al­ways put her best out,” Kaycean said. “I al­ways say if you don’t see her with the [swollen] knee, and the pain that she was in you would not know what she was go­ing through be­cause her spirit was so high.”

Mon­quie said: “Gil­lian was the nicest per­son. She got seven sub­jects and was go­ing places. She was daddy’s favourite and would deal with all of his trans­ac­tions and sit and rea­son with him dem way deh.”

Their fa­ther, a Rasta­far­ian, told THE STAR that the last time he saw Gil­lian alive, the can­cer had eaten away at her so much that he had to turn to the heav­ens for help.

“I was talk­ing to her and telling her that I love her, but she didn’t re­spond so mi step aside and started pray­ing to Jah for her to wake and say some­thing and she wake up and ev­ery­body sur­prise,” he re­called. “We start feed her some En­sure and she just drink it, but she didn’t say any­thing and af­ter that she lay down back and that was it.”

CON­TRIB­UTED

Gil­lian Wal­cott

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