Sisters in ‘last-chance’ appeal to help ill mum

A TRIO of brave Suffolk sisters who have pulled together to care for their poorly mother have made a desperate plea for help.

Rochelle, Olivia and Hannah Bugg want to find alternative treatments for mum Shirley, who is undergoing chemotherapy for a brain tumour.

Her daughters say there has been a 'massive deterioration' in the health of the 56-year-old former sports teacher over the last month.

Rochelle, 26, a former pupil at Saint Felix School in Southwold, said: 'It's a last-chance hope that someone, somewhere, might know something that can help.

'I need to know I have done everything I can.

'We lost our dad to cancer when we were young so it's just a case of doing everything we can to save our mum.

'I feel silly because I don't know what I'm asking for but it's just in case, really.'

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Shirley left her post at Ipswich High School after falling ill in November 2010 – symptoms that were thought to have been caused by a mini-stroke. But further scans revealed a tumour, the position of which on the brain stem means doctors cannot operate.

Rochelle added: 'Over the past month there's been a massive deterioration about what she can and cannot do.

'On Monday (January 9) she started chemotherapy but it's all very much palliative. It's just a case of controlling the growth as long as possible.'

Rochelle and Hannah, 21, both made sacrifices to return home to Bonny Crescent, Ipswich, to help sister Olivia, 17, a student at Suffolk New College, care for their mum.

The girls – who lost their dad James to pancreatic cancer in 2000 – have set up a blog to help them deal with their heartache.

Rochelle said: 'I'm so grateful we all get along. If we can get through this we can get through anything.

'The blog has been really good as well. People have got in touch who are old friends of my mum's and other people who have lost relatives.

'It's great to have something positive to focus on to help us get through this difficult time.

'Thankfully not many young people experience the pain of caring for or losing a parent.

'Yet for those of us who have been through it we know it can be a very isolating and frightening experience.'

If you can help the Bugg family e-mail

• See for the girls' blog.

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