CARYS Bradshaw, the eight-year-old girl from Sydney’s northern beaches who was battling a rare brain tumour, has died.
Her mother Rachel Lau has announced on her Facebook page that the little girl with the big heart spent her last days at Manly’s Bear Cottage hospice for children.
Ms Lau, and Carys’ father Jack Bradshaw, said their daughter’s funeral will be held on Thursday at St Matthews Church on The Corso at Manly from 11am.
“We feel that wearing formal black isn’t fitting for this occasion, so we ask that attire is respectfully smart casual, colourful and cheerful,” Ms Lau wrote on Facebook.
“We ask that instead of flowers people make a donation to the wonderful children’s hospice Bear Cottage, where Carys spent her last few days.”
There will be a celebration of her life at Queenscliff Surf Life Saving Club after the funeral, from 1pm.
“Both these venues were chosen specifically with Carys in mind,” Ms Lau wrote.
“She was a typical Manly girl who loved playing around the beach and The Corso. She was also a proud Queensie Nipper, and would spend every summer Sunday morning enjoying a post Nippers sausage sizzle with her face covered in tomato sauce at the SLSC.”
Carys, a popular student at Manly West Public School, started getting headaches and being sick in December, 2016.
A GP sent her for an MRI scan and she was diagnosed with a rare, aggressive brain cancer called diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, or DIPG.
It has no cure, is inoperable and does not respond to normal chemotherapy. Carys was not expected to live more than 12 months.
Her parents, who have a younger daughter, Maya, found a trial in London in their native UK and the northern beaches community helped raise more than $300,000 for the treatment so they could spend more precious time with Carys.
It uses revolutionary, robot-led technology. Tiny catheters, less than half a millimetre thick were put into Carys’ head to deliver chemotherapy drugs.
Mrs Bradshaw gave up her job as a legal secretary to relocate with her daughter to the UK.
So far the family has spent $250,000 on the medical bills.
In November Ms Lau got the news that doctors discovered her brain tumour had spread so the “robot” procedure had to be put on hold.
Carys’ walking and speech had been affected.
But Ms Lau told the Manly Daily in February that her daughter had joined the Girl Guide group, Brownies, and had been horse riding.
Her mum said: “She never complains.”
To donate to Bear Cottage go to http://www.bearcottage.chw.edu.au/donate.php.
Please use the reference “Donation for Carys”.