Reuben tips hat to charity after beating tumour

Oscar Thynne (right) and Reuben Coe take part in the Wear a Hat Day for Brain Tumour Research. Photo by Matthew Phillips.
Oscar Thynne (right) and Reuben Coe take part in the Wear a Hat Day for Brain Tumour Research. Photo by Matthew Phillips.

Teenager Reuben Coe was diagnosed with a brain tumour after being taken ill on a school geography field trip.

The brave A-level student is now hoping to raise awareness of the condition after being given the all clear by doctors.

Sixth formers take part in the Wear a Hat Day for Brain Tumour Research. Photo by Laurence Johnson.

Sixth formers take part in the Wear a Hat Day for Brain Tumour Research. Photo by Laurence Johnson.

Reuben was 16 when he was struck down with the tumour.

The Ripley pupil said: “I was on a geography field trip in December 2013 and had really bad headaches.

“I woke up in the middle of the night screaming because my head was so bad.

“I was taken by ambulance to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary A&E, and by that time I was falling in and out of consciousness.

“I was given a CT scan which found I had a brain tumour and was taken straight to Manchester Children’s Hospital.

“I stayed there for seven or eight days and had two operations, one to release the pressure on my brain and one for a biopsy.”

Reuben started a 16-week course of chemotherapy last January, followed by six weeks of radiotherapy.

He said: “I had a scan after the chemo which showed the tumour had almost gone, but I needed the radiotherapy to stop it coming back.

“A scan after that showed it had gone and there was just scar tissue left.

“They don’t expect it to come back again but I’ll have check-ups for the rest of my life.”

Reuben is now re-sitting Year 12 at Ripley, where he is studying A-levels in geography, maths, physics and product design, after missing much of the year during his treatment.

He said: “Everyone at school has been really supportive.”

And with the help of close friends, Reuben, now 17, joined in with the Brain Tumour Research charity’s national Wear A Hat Day initiative last Thursday.

The Brain Tumour Research charity carries out research into the cause and treatment of brain tumours.

The charity receives just 0.7 per cent of its funding from the government.

The Ripley students formed an unofficial ‘student alliance’ with pupils at Lancaster Girls’ Grammar School in order to collaborate and raise funds for Brain Tumour Research.

LGGS pupils had already set the ball rolling by selling Mother’s Day cards in school.

Christ Church Primary School in Carnforth, which Reuben attended before Ripley, also joined in with the event.

Reuben’s friend Oscar Thynne said: “We aim to show that students want to work together more, especially when it comes to charity.

“For the first time, instead of individual schools, we are a body of students working together towards one fundraising aim.

“It was nice that it was just the students organising everything – teachers didn’t get involved at all.

“It is also a good opportunity to raise awareness about Brain Tumour Research.”

The grand total raised between the three schools was £611.97, with Ripley raising £382.77, LGGS raising £129.20 and Christ Church raising £100.

The event follows a similar initiative last year, when Oscar, 18, organised a Wear A Hat Day at 48 hours’ notice while Reuben was in hospital, raising £315.

He said: “This year we wanted to go a bit bigger and have students in Lancaster raising money, rather than just at Ripley.”