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Connah’s Quay mum launches £250,000 cancer appeal fund for daughter

A MOTHER has spoken of her heartbreak at watching her baby girl battle a rare and aggressive cancer.

Naomi Stanley, from Connah’s Quay, had her world turned upside down in October when her 20-month-old daughter Anya was diagnosed with advanced neuroblastoma.

The 27-year-old, who was forced to cancel her wedding to partner Graeme Bentham, 44, because their daughter was so poorly, has launched a fundraising appeal to find the cash that could save Anya’s life.

Treatment for the cancer – which affects about 100 children a year – is not as advanced in the UK as it is in America and Germany.

So to give Anya the best chance of survival her parents may have no choice but to take her abroad for treatment – which could set them back £250,000.

Anya is undergoing chemotherapy at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool before she has surgery to remove her tumour, radiation therapy and a stem cell transplant.

She will then be given one of two drugs being trialled in the UK – and if that doesn’t work then her parents will take her abroad.

Even if Anya is cured the cash raised from the appeal could still be vital, as there is a 50% chance she could relapse.

Naomi, a former Connah’s Quay High School, said: “It’s heartbreaking. Seeing her have to go through this is crucifying for us.”

She added: “Anya is amazing. She still smiles and laughs. It’s her smile that keeps us going and gets us up fighting for her every day.”

Naomi was due to marry Graeme – who works at the E.ON power station in Connah’s Quay – on October 5.

But the couple had no choice but to cancel because Anya had been poorly in the run-up, having had two operations as doctors tried to find out what was wrong with her.

“She had a beautiful little dress but she wasn’t well enough and we weren’t in the right frame of mind,” said Naomi.

“That pales into insignificance now, it means nothing. Anya getting better is the only thing that matters.”