Parents from Diss pay tribute to son, 14, who died after battle with brain tumour
A Diss couple have paid tribute to their 14-year-old son after he lost his long battle with cancer.
Diss High School student Callum Doe died on August 20 from a diffuse midline glioma, an extremely aggressive brain tumour.
This week, his parents, Michelle and Ian, paid tribute to their “funny and mischievous” son, who had spent his final months volunteering at a number of community groups around Diss.
“He was funny and mischievous, but he had very good manners; he was really helpful,” said Mrs Doe, 46.
“When he was first taken ill, one of the paramedics said that even though he didn’t know where he was, he didn’t forget his manners and he thanked them all for everything.”
Mr Doe, 50, added: “I think that’s what everyone has said; all the medical staff commented on how well-mannered and thankful he was.”
After falling ill on Christmas Eve in 2018, Callum spent the final 18 months of his life between his home in Willbye Avenue, where he lived with his parents and his 18-year-old sister, Abi, and at The Nook – part of East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices – in Framlingham Earl.
Mrs Doe, who works at a children’s centre, said her son, who was an avid Norwich City supporter, never complained during his countless visits to hospital.
“He knew what could happen to people with a brain tumour, and he knew that people don’t often survive,” said Mrs Doe.
“What he went through was heartbreaking, and he never complained once; he never moaned about it.
“I’m sure he was scared, but he didn’t show it, because I think he wanted to protect us.”
Following his diagnosis, Callum received well wishes from former-Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp, a signed shirt from current Norwich City goalkeeper Tim Krul and appeared as a mascot at Carrow Road.
In his spare time, he volunteered at local community groups, picking up Diss Town Council’s Junior Good Citizen Award in March for his work with intergenerational projects in the community, as well as running a tuck shop at Diss Youth Club and making decorations for elderly residents.
When he was given the award, Julia Fairbrother, who works at Diss Youth Club, said: “No task given to Callum is ever a problem. He does any job needed, whether it’s wet, cold, snowy or sunny and is always eager to learn.
“He is a truly amazing, funny and intelligent young person, who has always been kind, considerate and helpful to others, despite his own personal battles.”
His funeral, which took place in St Mary’s Church in Diss last week, saw more than 100 people line the streets of Diss, sporting football strips and clapping as his hearse made its way through the town.
Mr Doe said: “With coronavirus, it was difficult, as we were only allowed 30 people in the church, and 30 people in the reception, but there were people all the way along the road.”
Mrs Doe added: “People came to our house, and followed the hearse, clapping all the way, and we really weren’t expecting that – it was amazing, and really emotional.”
A fundraising page has been set up in Callum’s name, raising money for Each, and has pulled in almost £2,000 already.
To donate, click here .