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Grace's artistic tribute in memory of aunt

Claire Tennyson

Reporter:

Claire Tennyson

LOCAL girl, Grace Montgomery, has put her artistic flair to good use by setting up a card business to raise money for the cancer ward in Belfast City Hospital.

The 11-year-old lost her auntie Gillian (Elder) to leukaemia in 2017 and decided to start her own business called 'Graceful Cards'.

She made and sold cards at Christmas and raised a grand total of £306.70 and continued to make cards for various occasions.

The inspirational young girl wanted to give the money she raised to Ward 10 North in the City Hospital where her aunt had been cared for.

With the money the ward was able to purchase a riser/recliner chair for patients to sit on during the day but also for family members to sleep on while staying with their loved one.

Grace's aunt Gillian worked as a teacher and then as a youth worker which was her true calling in life.

Gillian was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML) in April 2017, just three months off finishing her course at Faith Mission Bible College, and sadly passed away in October 2017.

She was vibrant, full of fun and mischief, and loved a good ‘carry on’.

Gillian was brought up just outside Clough in a close-knit family of five plus her parents, which she likened on occasion to a circus!

Her family say even when diagnosed with leukaemia, she was determined to continue and finish her studies at Faith Mission Bible College.

She also retained a strong faith in the midst of adversity, this was evident to patients and staff alike, either through conversation or how she was dealing with her illness.

Acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) is a form of blood cancer, which affects the white blood cells known as myeloid cells.

It is a rapidly progressing form of leukaemia.

Some of the signs and symptoms of leukaemia are fever and chills, losing weight without trying, swollen lymph nodes, recurrent nose bleeds, bone pain or tenderness.

If you have persistent signs or symptoms it is very important to see your GP.

Sometimes symptoms are vague and non-specific and can be overlooked so it is important to be vigilant.

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