Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 September 2014

Doctors told Celine she'd never live to see her son at school... but she has

Celine Sheridan with her husband Neil
Celine Sheridan with her husband Neil

When Celine Sheridan was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour in 2009, doctors said she wouldn't live to see her newborn son Ciaran start school.

But the 34-year-old mother-of-three from Armagh has defied the odds and this week waved her youngest child off for his first day at school.

Celine, a former chef, was diagnosed with an inoperable grade 3/4 brain tumour in 2009 after experiencing severe headaches, and has undergone chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment.

Her husband Neil says their children Nicole (12), Niall (5) and Ciaran (4) "keep Celine fighting" and he couldn't have been prouder of his wife on September 1, when she was there to see Ciaran start primary one at Mount St Catherine's Primary School.

Neil (35) told the Belfast Telegraph: "Doctors said she wouldn't get to see Ciaran go to school, but she has.

"It was a great moment we didn't think would happen. I was so proud of Celine. She's still fighting on and we are taking each day as it comes.

"The kids keep Celine fighting, she fights for them every day. Family has been a great help, we all pull together.

"The hospice at Dungannon Hospital have been great."

On Sunday, Neil posted a message on Twitter sharing his delight at her reaching the emotional milestone.

"My wife was diagnosed with Terminal Brain Cancer in 09 was told by doc she wont see our wee mans 1st day of school She Will, its 2marra :-)," he wrote.

What happened next has buoyed Neil and Celine's spirits as their son headed off to school.

Within seconds more than 7,000 people had retweeted or favourited Neil's post and soon the couple were inundated with messages of support, including from English pro boxer Scotty Cardle and Irish model Yvonne Keating.

Neil said his family has been overwhelmed by the online response.

"People have been so nice," he said.

"I can't believe my tweet reached so many people.

"Some of the replies have been just brilliant.

"Complete strangers have been in touch and other families have shared their problems too."

Neil has decided to run Belfast Marathon as part of a relay team on May 5, 2014 to highlight brain tumours in young people and raise £5,000 for the charity Brainwaves NI.

"There is a lack of awareness about brain tumours," he said.

"It can happen to anyone. Research is underfunded, so I want to do my bit."

To make a donation visit www.justgiving.com/neil-sheridan

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