Sunderland tot honoured for brave cancer fight

Brave Kian Armstrong with his mum Gemma, dad Neil, brothers Keith 14 and Kyle seven, and sister Keeley, 10, on his return home from hospital

Brave Kian Armstrong with his mum Gemma, dad Neil, brothers Keith 14 and Kyle seven, and sister Keeley, 10, on his return home from hospital

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HIS family have always known he is a little star – and now he has the trophy to prove it,

Three-year-old Kian Armstrong, who was diagnosed with deadly neuroblastoma earlier this year, has been recognised by Cancer Research UK for not letting his illness get him down.

Three-year-old Kian Armstrong pictured enjoying the fine summer weather in his specially adapted garden. Also pictured is his sister Keeley, 10.

Three-year-old Kian Armstrong pictured enjoying the fine summer weather in his specially adapted garden. Also pictured is his sister Keeley, 10.

When he was diagnosed, Kian’s family were told the deadly cancer had spread to 95 per cent of his bones.

Chemotherapy treatment saw the tumour inside his body, once the size of a melon, shrink by 90 per cent.

A successful operation last month saw medics remove Kian’s tumour.

The always-smiling Castletown tot has now been given a Little Stars award for his bravery in the face of adversity as well as a £50 gift card for high-street retailer TK Maxx, which sponsored the awards.

Boyband JLS and England captain Steven Gerrard are just some of the famous faces backing the honours and have signed a certificate, which Kian has also been sent.

Mum Jemma, who nominated him for the gong, hailed her son as “amazing”.

“For everything he’s gone through, all the hours of the chemotherapy, radiotherapy, the stem cell harvest he’s had and still to be smiling, well, if that’s not inspiration for you I don’t know what is,” said Jemma, 29.

On Christmas Eve, now less than a month away, Kian is due to start immunotherapy treatment.

Despite his gruelling schedule of treatment at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle, Kian still manages to fit in days at Castletown Primary School, where he is a pupil.

Jemma, also mum to Kian’s sister Keeley, 10, and brothers Keith, 14, and Kyle, seven, said: “We are under no illusions about how hard things are for Kian, but we have just got to keep going.

“He has about another seven months worth of treatment left and then we are just hoping the cancer doesn’t return.”

Paul Wadsworth, Cancer Research UK’s spokesman for the North East, said: “Kian is a true ‘Little Star’ who richly deserves this accolade.

“We hope to acknowledge the bravery of many more children like Kian across the region and are encouraging family and friends to get nominating now.”

To nominate a Cancer Research UK Little Star go to www.cruk.org/littlestar.

Twitter: @davidallison88