THE heartbroken family of a mum who lost a brain tumour battle aged just 35 were joined by kind-hearted strangers on a charity walk in her memory.
Caroline Iley, from Horden, was just 35 when she passed away in 2010, after an 18-month battle.
Her daughter Lauren Emery, 21, and nine-year-old son Danny Longworth took part in a seven-mile sponsored walk from The Saxon pub, in Easington Road, Hartlepool, to The Moorcock pub, in Burnhope Way, Peterlee.
The walk, which took three-and-a-half hours, was in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, which helped Caroline in her final days, when she was cared for at Hartlepool and District Hospice.
Lauren, who is originally from Horden, but now lives in the Burn Valley area of Hartlepool with partner Christopher Dobie, said: “We were all strangers when we met for the walk, but we got on really well, talking about anything and everything.”
Lauren, whose two young children, Clayton Dobie, three, and Ayden Dobie, one, also took part in the walk, described her mum as “a spring chicken, she was just like my sister”.
She said Caroline had initially suffered headaches, but was sent home with painkillers, and it wasn’t until a few months later, when she started fainting that a scan revealed the tumour. But by then, it was too late to save her.
“She had an operation to take half of the tumour away at James Cook Hospital,” said Lauren.
“But it was one of the fastest growing brain tumours there is.”