Isaac's Story

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A loving and generous boy, Isaac always put the needs of others ahead of his own. When diagnosed with cancer at 12 years of age, he responded with courage and positivity, inspiring all those around him.

Pre-diagnosis

Isaac’s mum describes him as ‘a gentle giant’, a nurturing boy who often took on the role of protector. A confident and friendly child, he was loved by all. When he started high school, Isaac was keen to be involved in everything, including rugby, two school bands and choir.

Symptoms

It was this busy schedule that made Geraldine think stress was to blame when Isaac began to experience headaches and vomiting in late 2017. But when he became dehydrated and started to lose weight, Geraldine and Gary decided to take him to hospital. The next morning, an MRI was done which showed up a brain tumour.


We were like, ‘What? He has anxiety, he’s just got stress’. I honestly couldn’t believe the diagnosis.

- Geraldine, Isaac's mum 

Diagnosis

Isaac was rushed to Sydney Children’s Hospital, where the family had an agonising wait while more tests were done. Then came the heartbreaking diagnosis: a brain cancer called anaplastic astrocytoma Grade III. The cancer was rare, inoperable and terminal.

Treatment

Isaac underwent an operation to drain some of the fluid from his brain, and soon after began a grueling treatment schedule, with radiation treatment given every day for six weeks. Despite suffering ongoing nausea, a series of seizures, and a range of other horrific side effects, he never once complained.


He was vomiting a lot and must have felt disgusting, but he didn’t flinch once. He was so strong.

- Geraldine, Isaac's mum 

The pressure in Isaac’s brain had to be relieved regularly and a shunt was put in his head to allow for drainage. When he could, he went to school for a few hours at a time and played with friends. Once radiotherapy was over, six months of chemotherapy began. Isaac faced each challenge with incredible bravery, while his parents kept their hope alive.

Palliative care

As Isaac’s cancer grew, he was progressively stripped of his functions. First his eyesight went, then the entire right side of his body. Soon he couldn’t walk on his own, became incontinent and was in constant pain. On 17 November 2018, Isaac went into palliative care. Just over a week later, and less than 12 months after his diagnosis, he passed away.


This is the hardest part for us, living without our son. If we can save just one life, that would be awesome.

- Geraldine & Gary, Isaac's mum & dad 

Today

Geraldine and Gary are determined to do all they can to prevent other families from having to endure such unbearable loss. They are now raising funds for brain cancer research, and are well on their way to their goal of one million dollars.


Children and their families shouldn’t have to go through this. We have to do all we can to stop this happening to anyone else. Isaac would want that.

- Geraldine, Isaac's mum 

Your donation will go to Isaac's Fund !