My cousin, George All of these losses have had a profound effect on me and how I live my life – but the most significant loss is my cousin George. George was 14 months old when his mum died. Then on his second birthday he was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, a childhood cancer that develops in bone, muscle or cartilage. At the time my family was assured that it was not linked to his mum – but just a terrible coincidence. George had treatment and went into remission. But the cancer returned and he was given less than 5 per cent chance of surviving. Somehow, this amazing little boy managed to defy all the odds and for a while the disease went away. There were many scares throughout the years but George grew to be a healthy, strong, fit and lovable young boy. A case of skin cancer was found and treated when he was 15 years old. Then came the bombshell that changed our world forever. George was diagnosed with osteosarcoma of the jaw when he was 15 years old. It was only then, once George had been diagnosed with his third cancer, that a genetic test revealed that he had Li Fraumeni Syndrome, a gene mutation probably inherited from his mum. My uncle is a very clever man, a scientist. He had the means to research and gain information. He searched the globe for a way to help George. Our family spent the next two years in hospitals whilst George went through jaw replacements, chemotherapy, surgeries, photo-dynamic therapy, anything and everything that could possibly cure him. George died on 25th April 2011 on my 22nd birthday and just three months before his 18th birthday. George was more than a cousin to me, he was my brother. He was the heartbeat of my family. A happy, vibrant, loving boy who provided us all with so much joy. I never will recover from his loss. There is a huge hole where he should be and my grief strikes me at odd times – I remember crying hard when Chelsea won the Champions League because I wished he was there to celebrate with me.