Man’s terminal brain cancer inspires month-long challenge

2 min read

The mother-in-law of a man diagnosed with terminal brain cancer is nearing the end of a month-long challenge to help find a cure for the disease. 

Jane Paton, 61, from Horley in Surrey, was inspired to participate in our 200k in May Your Way challenge after her daughter’s husband, Graeme McAllen, was diagnosed with a glioblastoma (GBM) in August 2023.

Father-of-three Graeme’s tumour was discovered following him experiencing difficulty in finding words during a conversation at work. He was placed on palliative radiotherapy and chemotherapy, having been told an operation carried a high-risk of being left with life-changing injuries. Graeme was given just 12-18 months to live. 

After seeking a second opinion in January 2024, the 42-year-old, also from Horley, underwent an awake craniotomy during which around 90% of his tumour was debulked. 

Graeme, who owns a recruitment company, is married to Tamara, 33, with whom he shares three sons, aged 14, four and 18 months. In a bid to buy the dad more time with his children, the family are crowdfunding for alternative treatments not yet available on the NHS. 

Jane, who works as a teacher for adults with learning difficulties, said: “We know the cancer is aggressive and that, when it grows back, it will do so at speed. We want to try everything we can to prolong his life in the hope he will live long enough to see his boys grow up.” 

Now, Jane (below) is coming towards the end of the challenge to walk, run, cycle or swim a distance of 200km throughout May.

Jane said: “I have challenged myself in support of my son-in-law in his fight against his GBM. Alongside doing household chores and daily walks, I have found that weekly fitness classes have been a great way to increase my mileage. 

She added: “I had no idea about the disease before it affected my family. You don’t really unless you’re living it. I was shocked to find out that just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours since records began in 2002. We must take action now if we are to stop families from being ripped apart by this horrendous disease.” 

To donate to Brain Tumour Research via Jane’s challenge, please visit: 

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