‘Stephen’s Story’ passes the £3.9 million fundraising mark

THUMBS-UPFundraising for ‘Stephen’s Story’ appeal has reached nearly £4 million pounds from almost 200,000 donations. He has raised  almost 400 times his original goal of £10,000.

Stephen recently passed away peacefully in his sleep on the 14th of May.  His family updated his Facebook page with a tribute to Stephen and asked for privacy following his death.  Stephen’s mum said “”My heart is bursting with pride but breaking with pain for my courageous, selfless, inspirational son”. 

After being diagnosed with incurable bowl cancer, 19 year old Stephen Sutton created the Facebook page ‘Stephen’s Story’ to raise awareness of teenage cancer and spread positivity.  The page has since reached over a million likes.  Soon after, Stephens website www.Stephensstory.co.uk was launched, to showcase his achievements and create a platform for his fundraising for the Teenage Cancer Trust.  

Stephen had hosted a number of fundraising events, including talks and fundraising dinners and parties, with all the proceeds going towards the Teenage Cancer Trust.  People have been encouraged to carry out their own fundraising events to raise money for the cause, some of which have included charity quizzes, skydiving  and  charity dinner parties.  Stephen said “There was also so many exciting projects and things I didn’t get to see out. Hopefully some will continue and if you want to carry on the fundraising please do (justgiving.com/stephen-…sutton-TCT is the link to donate to)”.  The donations continue to amass on Stephen’s Just Giving page. 

Ryan Terry who was a close friend of Stephen and law student at the University of Nottingham last week threw a good gestures event at Old Market Square to raise money for the cause.  The event included giving out free hugs and fist bumps, in an attempt to encourage people to carry out good gestures.  He expressed his admiration for the brevity shown by his friend Stephen. 

Stated on his website : “I’m not afraid of dying, I am afraid of not cramming as much into my life as I should have done”.  Stephen’s original ambition was to become a Doctor.  However, after his cancer had spread and Doctors diagnosed it as incurable, he decided to take a more pragmatic approach to the remainder of his life by putting together a bucket list of 46 things that he wanted to do before he died.  Some of the things on the list included doing a charity skydive, hugging an elephant and getting Tim Minchin to write him a song.  Stephen managed to complete nearly all of the items on his bucket list.  Stephen maintained a inspiringly positive attitude throughout his battle with cancer despite his struggles. 

Recognition for the cause snowballed after it gained celebrity attention from people such as Russell Brand, Jimmy Carr and Jack Whitehall.  Even David Cameron came to pay him a visit in hospital.  Since his death, several high profile public figures have paid their condolences via Twitter.  Such as :

@jasonManford: @_StephensStory sleep well friend.

@Rickygervais: RIP Stephen Sutton. A true hero & inspiration to us all. #Stephen story.

@sarahmillican: so sad to hear about Stephen Sutton. What a wonderful and inspiring man. RI.

@SimonCowell: So very sad to hear that Stephen Sutton has passed away. He was a very brave person and an inspiration to millions. Rest in peace.

@piersmorgan :  RIP Stephen Sutton – an extraordinary, courageous, inspiring young man who achieved his aim, and made a difference. A very BIG difference.

@David_Cameron : I’m deeply saddened to hear that Stephen Sutton has died. His spirit, bravery and fundraising for cancer research were all an inspiration.

The Church of England has offered the Litchfield Cathedral to the family free of charge for his funeral.  The churches capacity of 1,00 people means that many of Stephens supporters can attend the funeral.  An online petition was started to allow for Stephen to receive a state funeral.    

Stephen has left behind a massive legacy and has done a lot in the way of raising  awareness of teenage cancer. 

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