Debbie Brown Needle

My mother was a gifted writer. After a successful career writing for television and radio she later went on to write novels. She loved public speaking and was given constant praise for her way with words. She could quote Shakespeare, Dickens and Hemingway as if she were reciting the alphabet. When my mother couldn’t find the words to speak a simple sentence I knew something was wrong. Within a matter of weeks she went from being a brilliant, vibrant woman to fearing she had dementia. She was diagnosed with a glioblastoma (the most common and aggressive form of malignant primary brain tumor), and immediately had surgery to remove it. Over the next five months my mother suffered endlessly, losing the ability to walk, talk and do anything for herself. Watching such a bright, dignified woman suffer this way was cruel and painful to us all, but especially unfair to my mother. Seeing my mother succumb to this horrible disease, and realizing how little progress there has been in the treatment of glioblastomas, I knew that I had to do something to make a difference.