Christopher Ashley was born on the 26th October 1988.
As a young child he was a most energetic boy; playing for every local football team possible, Chris loved football and was renowned for his goal scoring techniques. As a teenager Chris’s sporting passions developed, he became a very social teenager and had many friends. Chris truly loved spending time with his whole family especially his brother James.
As a young adult Chris’s love of football continued along with a new sporting passion for skiing which he did every year travelling all around Europe to experience new skiing thrills on the slopes. Chris always had to be doing something, his fun and excitable personality meant he had many friends and was always busy. As a young adult Chris also embarking on his career as a Scaffolder working for Cape. carving out a successful career becoming an advocate or the industries Health and Safety.
At the end of 2009 at the age of 21, Chris consulted his Doctor and later a Specialist following pain in his back and legs and was diagnosed with Ependymoma. Due to the size and growth of the tumor he was told that it had probably been present since the age of about 9. Although this disease is more commonly diagnosed initially in the brain Chris’s tumor took a different course starting in the spine and years later becoming a tumor of the brain.
In January 2011 Chris underwent his first operation for his Ependymoma tumor followed by a course of Radiotherapy, resulting in eight months off work, during which time Chris received tremendous support from both his employer and colleagues.
In 2012 Doctors confirmed that Chris’s condition had developed to metastic Disease.
In November 2013 Chris underwent further radiotherapy with some successful regression of the tumor, however by November 2014 Chris experienced significant deterioration in his lower limbs resulting in some paralysis and underwent further surgery in December 2014.
During all this time Chris continued to work whenever possible, his active social life thanks to the help and support of his friends remained unaffected and he continued to enjoy skiing, horse racing and football.
In June 2015 Chris’s condition deteriorated and required further surgery and more radiotherapy, followed by chemotherapy in September of that year. By December an MRI confirmed that the tumor had significantly grown throughout his lumber areas and had extended up his spine, at this point in time Chris was told that there was no other treatment options available.
Over the following months the tumor rapidly progressed further along Chris’s spine and ultimately in January 2016 to his brain resulting in his loss of sight and his ability to communicate at times.
Chris’s condition deteriorated and after a hard fought battle Chris passed away at his home early morning on the 13th April 2016.
We both write this as the loving parents of Chris, having lost Chris only months ago we still struggling to come to terms with the loss every day. Our lives changed so much following Chris’s diagnosis as licensees of a successful pub and restaurant we chose to leave the industry and move to a house with more suitable facilities and a life style that allowed us to help and support our son and later I his Dad took the last five months of Chris’s life off work to ensure our Son’s last months were at home with his family and daughter, I didn’t just lose my Son I lost one of my real best friends.
Furthering the story of Chris’s life; In August 2012 against all odds following repetitive radiotherapy Chris’s partner became pregnant and on the 7th June 2013 our Granddaughter, Chris’s daughter Florence was born, even after part paralysis requiring foot and leg splints we still remember Chris playing football in the park with Florence when she was 2 years old. Reminding us all that Chris lived every day of his life the best he possibly could. We remember his skiing trip to Austria, part paralysis in his leg, quite poorly, but still laughing, having fun on slopes and never allowing his disease to stop him doing what he wanted to do.
Unfortunately Chris’s last planned skiing trip to Bulgaria in March 2016 was not to happen due to his rapid deterioration, however I his Mom along with the many memories of skiing with Chris will shortly return to the slopes to spread a little of his ashes.
Following Chris’s death so many family and friends have given their time, their money and their support to our desire to support the Chris Bramhall Brain Tumor Charity which for us started with a collection at Chris’s widely attended funeral; people pouring out of the doors onto the path outside, collecting over £800 followed by a local sponsored event raising a further £800, Sober for October raising a further £ 300, and our friend Phil Hand with his forthcoming climb to Everest Base Camp currently at £325 of a £2,000 target (www.justgiving.com/Phil-Hand). And most recently a fun race night held on 19th November raising £3500.