Around Australia for Brain Cancer Research – In memory of Jennifer Handley.

30 November 2019, 12:00 am

Ian Handley lost his wife to breast then brain cancer in early 2018. In her memory and to raise funds for research Ian is travelling around Australia from April to November 2019.

If you would like to donate to Ian’s Trek please click on the link https://give.everydayhero.com/au/around-australia-for-brain-cancer

To read more about Ian’s wife story please see below. Thank you Ian for supporting MHF and we wish you all the very best on your travels.  


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thumbnail image10Brain cancer was not Jenny’s primary cancer. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011. After a mastectomy, chemotherapy and later a breast reconstruction life resumed some sort of normality. Jennifer and her husband Ian, realised that life was very precious and so they took leave transitioning to retirement, sold their home and set out in their caravan to travel around Australia for 18 months.

> Jenny had yearly check ups and at the five year visit to the oncologist they were expecting the all clear only to be told that the cancer had spread to her right lung. She had radiotherapy to shrink the cancer before an operation to remove most of her right lung.

> Jennifer recovered quickly. By this time they had purchased a home on the Central Coast so Jennifer could help care for her elderly parents.

> In 2016 Jennifer and her husband went on an overseas trip to Canada/Alaska and a tour of Europe. Towards the end of the trip they were in Berlin when Jen had a strange “turn”. They thought she may have had a mild stroke but she recovered quickly with no apparent side effects. Jen and Ian flew home a few days later during which time she did experience some loss of sensation in her right leg.

> Jennifer and Ian were both probably in a state of denial as Jen had suffered so much and they didn’t want anything else to go wrong.

> When they got home they decided to drive to Adelaide to visit their daughter who had recently had a birthday.

> On their arrival in Griffith Jen began to have trouble walking so they took her to the hospital. She was diagnosed with brain tumours and was flown by air ambulance to John Hunter Hospital where she had neurosurgery to remove two tumours on her brain.

> Again she recovered remarkably well and even survived the intensive radiation that followed.

> A short time of relative calm before scans revealed that there were more signs of cancer on her brain. More radiotherapy, immunotherapy and whole brain radiotherapy which all failed to stop the growth of these cancer cells. The last scans revealed at least 9 tumours on the brain as well as other cancers throughout her body.

> Jennifer passed away peacefully at home on 23rd January, 2018.

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