Tributes to Carlisle teenager after inspirational cancer battle

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A teenage girl who campaigned to raise awareness of bowel cancer has lost her battle with the disease.

Megan Pryde died peacefully on Friday, surrounded by her loved ones, at her Little Corby home. She was 19.

Family and friends of the former William Howard School pupil have paid tribute to a young woman who was popular, friendly, well-loved and an inspiration to all who met her.

Megan was just 18 when she received the devastating news that she had bowel cancer.

Determined not to let her diagnosis dictate who she was however, she passed her driving tests just a few weeks later and vowed she would be more than her cancer.

And, despite fighting the cruel disease daily and with the knowledge it was too aggressive to treat, Megan also decided to use her time raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust and awareness of bowel cancer.

Bev, Megan’s mum, said: "We can’t thank everyone enough for their kind messages over the last few days and for the support Megan received during her illness.

"Megan touched the hearts of many and that has been made very clear since her passing.

"We wanted to pay special thanks to Megan’s GP, her consultant Dr Quentin Campbell-Hewson, paediatric oncologist at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, The Teenage Cancer Trust and nurses from Jigsaw, Eden Valley Hospice who have all been wonderful.

“The care Megan received was second-to-none and the support they have given our family has been very much appreciated."

She added: "Megan fought very hard these last 16 months, but always had a big smile on her face throughout it all. Sleep tight my gorgeous baby."

Thirteen-year-old Ellie wrote her own tribute to her big sister on Facebook.

"You're the best sister I could have ever asked for," she wrote. "Thank you for always being there for me. Love you lots my gorgeous angel."

Louise Miles, regional fundraising manager for the north east and Cumbria, said: “When I first met Megan, she was surrounded by so many friends and family at her fundraising event for Teenage Cancer Trust at Fantails Restaurant, Wetheral.

"It was clear to me right away that she was someone who was popular, friendly and well-loved by many.

"To think about others and fundraise whilst she was so ill herself is an inspiration to us all.

"Our thoughts are with Megan’s family, friends and the many who have been touched by her."

Megan was a much-loved daughter of Bev and Mike, best sister ever to Ellie, and beloved friend to many.

Her funeral will be held at Holy Trinity & St Constantine Church, in Wetheral, at 11am on Saturday. It will be followed by a private burial at St Leonards Church, Warwick-on-Eden churchyard, before mourners are invited to Fantails, Wetheral, for a celebration of Megan’s life.

A spokesman for the family said that as part of the celebrations, and to grant Megan's wishes, anyone attending the funeral is asked to "dress to impress" - with no black.

They have requested that there are family flowers only, but any donations - both through a collection at the service and afterwards - will be given to The Children's Cancer Fund and Teenage Cancer Trust.

These can also be sent c/o Graeme Kennedy Funeral Director, 87 Blackwell Road, Carlisle.

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