Family fight for pioneering cancer treatment abroad

PUBLISHED: 08:00 03 June 2014

Chris and Laura Board with their boys, Max, Tommy, and Joshua.

Chris and Laura Board with their boys, Max, Tommy, and Joshua.

Archant

‘GO HARD or go home’ – that’s the message from a father of three battling a rare form of terminal cancer, who has launched an appeal to raise money for pioneering treatment abroad.

Chris and Laura Board with their boys, Max, Tommy, and Joshua.Chris and Laura Board with their boys, Max, Tommy, and Joshua.

Chris Board, aged 28 and of Weston, was diagnosed with germ cell cancer last year - which affects only around seven people in the UK each year.

As well as undergoing 28 weeks of chemotherapy, he has had operations on his brain and spine and spent a month in a coma.

Chris said he has run out of options on the NHS – but places as far abroad as Texas in the United States have access to clinical trials and treatments which could benefit him.

He is determined to fight the disease, and his family has launched an appeal called Boardy’s Battle.

His wife Laura, also aged 28, has spearheaded the campaign to raise money for the travel and accommodation.

She said: “Chris always says ‘go hard or go home’. I think it just means give it all or give up. And that’s what we are saying. We will not go home.”

Chris added: “That has always been my motto. It means something to me. I am a fighter and get on with it. I just keep going.”

Chris and Laura, met at school when they were 15 and married in Grove Park in 2011.

They have three boys together at their home in Birchwood Avenue called Tommy, aged five, Max, aged four, and Joshua, aged one.

In April, Chris was told he had developed a brain tumour, resulting in seizures. He had surgery, but was in a coma for the whole of April, missing Tommy and Max’s birthdays.

While awaiting discharge, the couple were told there were small tumours on his brain and spine.

Chris’ prognosis is a few months, but he continues to receive palliative chemotherapy.

Laura said: “We don’t have access to much on the NHS, and we’re only limited to so much. But we can never say ‘that’s it’.

“It’s palliative chemo now, not with the aim to cure, it just stunts growth. Which is good because it buys us time to look at other options.

“Once we have sorted treatment, and if it’s successful or if the worst should happen, we will continue the charity in Chris’ name to support families going through the same as us.

“It’s nice to think whatever’s left can go to families in the same position as us.”

Laura has been busy organising a fundraising event and family, friends and businesses have all been supporting it by donating money and raffle prizes.

Laura said: “Lots of friends have given 
us little donations, but the majority has 
come from the general public.

“It has all been really humbling. I want to say thank you to everyone.”

The Boardy’s Battle event is being held at The Old Kings Head Pub in The Scaurs on July 5 from 12.30pm.

n Pictured above: Chris and Laura Board with their boys, Max, Tommy and Joshua.

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