Star jump challenge launched by woman who lost her 15-year-old niece to a brain tumour

A woman has set out to take part in a 100 Star Jumps a Day challenge to raise funds in memory of her niece from Washington who sadly passed away following a brain tumour aged 15.

Friday, 5th November 2021, 2:30 pm
Updated Saturday, 6th November 2021, 12:22 pm
Amanda with her niece Jenna who sadly died of a brain tumour aged 15.

Amanda Coughlan, 36, is taking part in the 100 Star Jumps a Day challenge during November to raise money for Brain Tumour Research after her niece, Jenna Carrington, died from a brain tumour when she was 15-years-old.

Jenna’s family realised something was wrong in 2019 when she complained of headaches and feeling sick as well as having some mild seizures and lost her appetite.

Jenna, who attended Oxclose Community Academy in Washington, was 13 at the time and her GP thought it was because of ‘hormones’.

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Jenna, who lived in Sunderland died in May this year.

Her Aunt Amanda said: “On 19 December, she felt unwell at school. On her way to the school nurse, she had a seizure and fell, smashing her face on a table.”

A CT scan then found a large mass on Jenna’s brain.

Jenna was then taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) to have a biopsy and on 31 December was diagnosed with a grade 4 astrocytoma – she was told she had a life expectancy of 9-18 months.

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Amanda has set out to do 100 Star Jumps a Day in November to raise money for the Brain Tumour Research.

Amanda added: “We thought Jenna may have had diabetes or epilepsy, but we never imagined that she would have a brain tumour.”

The young fighter began a six-week course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy in January last year but by November, Jenna’s condition had deteriorated.

Sadly, in January 2021 more tumours were found on Jenna’s brain, and she also got dementia. She died at home on the morning of May 3.

Amanda, an IT major incident manager, said: “The whole family is heartbroken. If she had been able to hold on for seven more weeks, she would have met her baby cousin Ella.

“She remained so positive and tried to live each day the best she could. She was the most amazing girl.”

Amanda, from Newcastle, now plans to carry out her Star Jump challenge to raise funds, she added: “It’s been the hardest time of our lives, so it’s really important to do the star jumps challenge to raise money for Brain Tumour Research so other people don’t go through what she has been through.”

You can help donate to Amanda’s fund here.

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