26-year-old man loses fight with cancer after 10-year battle
A 26-YEAR-old man has died after a ten-year battle with cancer.
Jon Fredrickson was first diagnosed with a brain tumour when he was just 16 after a trip to the opticians.
He went on to develop another four tumours and courageously battled the disease each time it returned.
But after ten years of fighting cancer Jon, who lived in Yate, passed away at St Peter's Hospice on Friday.
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The former Brimsham Green pupil was sent straight to Frenchay Hospital after his optician first suspected a tumour and had surgery the very next day. Radiotherapy followed while he was studying for his GCSEs and his mother, Jacky, remembers him revising in hospital corridors. He then had chemotherapy at Bristol Children's Hospital.
By the end of the year there was no sign of the cancer and Jon was able to carry on with his life for about six years. He had taken his GCSES and his sixth form were flexible in letting him attend for an IT course when he was well enough.
His mother said that it had got to the point where the family believed the cancer would not come back but in October 2008 a routine scan showed otherwise.
"They rang him on his mobile phone and said they thought there was something there and Jon would have to come into hospital," she said.
"That was devastating because we didn't think it would come back."
Jon worked at Bristol City Council and the DWP in Bedminster and Fishponds, before taking a role in the job centre in Bath, where he rented a flat for a short time.
It was in 2010, while living in Bath, that Jon noticed a lump in his neck and it was discovered that the cancer had returned and was in his lymph glands and his brain.
Surgery was not an option for the lymph glands so the course of action was more chemotherapy, which continued from August 2010 until March 2011 on an almost daily basis.
In December 2010, while having chemotherapy at Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre, the Bristol Rovers fan was visited by one of the players, Will Hoskins, after his mother nominated him for a Christmas competition in the Post.
"It was his birthday and Christmas and he was mad keen on Bristol Rovers; that was his team, so I wrote in and he came and was lovely. "
His mother said that after the chemotherapy the lump in Jon's neck had reduced significantly and he had a clear scan.
"He was clear in March at the end of chemotherapy and had a clear scan, but then it had come back by the time of the next scan in April," she said.
"This time last year Jon had more surgery. It was the third time in the same site and that was very worrying. But he bounced back ever so quickly."
In October Jon was still clear of cancer and he was given a break from treatment. He managed to see his sister get married and enjoyed Christmas with his family.
"He was really well for that three months and really made the most of it," Mrs Fredrickson said.
Jon also took his parents away for a trip to Pembrokeshire in November, after winning a competition in the Post, which ended up being the last trip they took together.
There was also a trip to London funded by the Willow Foundation, a charity which provides special experiences for younger adults with terminal illnesses.
Jon also took the opportunity to travel around the UK.
His mum said: "He had wanted all along to go travelling but knew he could not go abroad so decided to go in this country because he knew he had to have his next scan in February.
"It gave him a little bit of time being completely independent."
The scan showed that the cancer had returned and Jon was given the choice as to whether he had more treatment or not. He opted to continue and kept fighting the disease but his health deteriorated and at the end of last month Jon was taken to St Peter's Hospice.
Mrs Fredrickson said: "It was a complete and utter rollercoaster – the elation when there was a clear scan and the devastation when the next one wasn't.
"Jon was certain he was going to beat this but there was no more he could have done."
Since his death Mrs Fredrickson has printed off eight pages of messages from friends from social networking site Facebook.
"What comes through is what an inspiration he was to so many people," she said.
"He rarely complained. He had an indomitable spirit and was very positive and did not ever wallow in self-pity. He was more concerned about me and his dad.
"He was jokey and funny right up until the end."
A celebration of Jon's life was being held at St Mary's Church in Yate at 2.45pm today and the family are asking for donations to St Peter's Hospice after he was cared for "beautifully by a team of angels".