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He held my hand and just closed his eyes... mum tells of son's cancer fight.

Byline: ASHLIE BLAKEY ashlie.blakey@trinitymirror.com @ashlieblakey13

A MUM has spoken of her heartache after her happy, cheeky, four-year-old son died of a rare form of cancer.

Ethan Turner, from Gorton, was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma in May 2016 after suffering with symptoms of constipation.

Doctors found a tumour in his stomach and despite having chemotherapy and radiotherapy, it kept growing.

Tragically, the City-loving youngster died at home at the weekend surrounded by his loving family. His mum Ashley Morgan, 25, now wants to raise awareness of the condition and pay tribute to her amazing son.

Little Ethan was diagnosed with the condition three years ago.

Fewer than 60 children a year are diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma in the UK each year.

Ashley, and Ethan's dad Mark Turner, 25, were in and out of the doctors with their son who was suffering from constipation.

"It was the last thing we could have ever imagined", she said. "It was going on for weeks so we took him to hospital where they just gave him enemas. He wasn't getting any better and was screaming the house down in that much pain.

"He stopped going to the toilet completely so they gave him a scan and this showed the tumour.

"He had a couple of months worth of chemo to try and shrink the tumour, which made him quite sick and groggy. It was no life for a two year old."

He underwent an operation to remove as much of the tumour as possible.

Because of Ethan's age and the form of cancer he had, he needed a specialised type of proton beam radiotherapy. The proton beam unit at The Christie was not completed until 2018 so Ethan was sent to Jacksonville in Florida for treatment instead.

Ethan and his family spent 11 weeks in the US receiving treatment and then returned to Manchester for further chemotherapy.

"After that, he went back to school. He was happy and went on holiday.

"And then it came up on a scan and he relapsed again. The cancer had spread to his thighs. He took his treatment in his stride. He was still happy and smiley and he never complained. He was so strong," Ashley added. He underwent a further eight months of treatment at The Christie hospital but relapsed again in February this year.

After doctors found the cancer had spread to his lungs, he stopped responding to treatment and became more poorly. Ashley said Little Ethan missed his comforts and asked to be taken home.

"He was in pain and it got harder and harder. He said 'I want to go home, mummy'. At home he was still bossing me and his dad about. We were all sat around as a family talking about memories."

He passed away peacefully on the evening of April 6 surrounded by his family.

"He held my hand and just closed his eyes. We were all there and it was the best it could have gone. He was not scared." Paying tribute to her son, Ashley said: "He had a right character, he was cheeky, everyone was wrapped around his little finger. He was loving and an amazing little boy.

"He was into football and was a massive Manchester City fan. He had all the kits. He loved Mickey Mouse and dinosaurs."

Ashley said she wants to raise awareness of the condition because of Ethan's common symptoms.

"Something so simple turned into something so dangerous and I urge any parents to keep pushing at the doctors if their child's constipation does not go away."

A GOFUNDME page has been set up to help pay for little Ethan's funeral costs and a fifth birthday celebration for him.

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Ethan in his City top

Ethan Turner and mum Ashley Morgan
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Publication:Manchester Evening News (Manchester, United Kingdom)
Date:Apr 10, 2019
Words:629
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