Bells signal big moment for cancer-fight children
A MUM whose daughter was struck down with cancer has had bells fitted in hospitals around Britain to signal the end of treatment for children battling the disease.
Tracey Payton, from Gatley, Stockport, set up the charity End of Treatment Bells after daughter Emma’s cancer fight.
Emma was eight when Tracey noticed a bump on her face while rubbing in suncream on holiday.
Back in the UK the family had it checked out and her GP initially believed it was a blocked saliva gland.
But an MRI scan revealed she had a rare soft tissue cancer, rhabdomyosarcoma.
Emma needed facial surgery and chemotherapy before travelling to the US for proton beam therapy in order to destroy any remaining cancer in her cheek. At the end of her proton beam therapy in Oklahoma, Emma was invited to ring a bell.
It was the moment that inspired Tracey to set up End of Treatment Bells.
So far they have distributed and fitted around 200 bells in hospitals in the UK and abroad.
Tracey said: “When you’re told your child has cancer it’s the worst–ever feeling.
“You just want them to get through it. For us we knew about the bell and we couldn’t wait for Emma to ring it.
“The was our end goal. When she did it, it was like a massive lead weight had been lifted off my chest.”
Emma, now 13, needs reconstructive surgery but there have been no signs of disease since her treatment.
Emma Payton rings a bell and, below, showing off the significance of the moment