Cancer survivor supporting mum

CANCER survivor Josh Dawson has already fought the battle of his life – and now he needs to be strong again for his mum as she faces her own health ordeal.

Seaton Carew woman Michaela Dawson, 46, was diagnosed with breast cancer at the University Hospital of North Tees, in Stockton, just last month.

Michaela Dawson and son Josh

Michaela Dawson and son Josh

It is the latest blow for the family as her son Josh, seven, was diagnosed with an ependymoma, a rare tumour of the brain’s support cells in September 2012.

Astonishingly, it was young Josh who found Michaela’s lump as he pulled himself up to her for a cuddle.

She went to her doctor, who sent her for a mammogram, which came back positive.

“I was gutted after what happened to Josh,” said Michaela. “I just thought ‘oh, not again’.”

She underwent surgery to remove a tumour and she has half of the lymph nodes from her underarm removed.

Former school caterer Michaela, who is also mum to Steph Burns, 21, is now waiting for her doctor to book her in for chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Josh hit the headlines in October 2012, after his diagnosis, and members of the community mounted a charity drive to raise money to send him to Legoland.

The Mail reported in September 2013 that the Holy Trinity Primary School pupil was clear of the tumour, though Michaela said Josh still has three-month check-ups.

But now the family are again facing turmoil after Michaela’s bombshell diagnosis.

She said: “You do think ‘why us?’ and ‘surely it can’t happen twice in one family?’

“But I’ve got to be strong for Josh.

“Even with what happened to him, you never get over it, it’s always there.

“It’s with you for the rest of your life.”

Michaela spoke of her pride at Josh’s involvement with yesterday’s race, which he also took part in last year, with help from family friend John Rogers.

She said: “I’m over the moon with Josh today.

“Michael Day is amazing for organising something like this to help families like us.

“He deserves a medal himself.”