Teenage Spirit Rose raising funds in memory of cancer victim

Jennifer Jones Jennifer Jones found time spent at a cancer unit for teenagers more relaxing

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Sales of a rose developed in memory of a young cancer sufferer will be used to help young sufferers get access to special units.

Jennifer Jones, from Birmingham, was 19 when she lost a second battle against a rare tumour, alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma.

Her first stay in hospital was spent in a children's ward but she was able to use a Teenage Cancer Trust (TCT) unit when the condition returned.

The pink rose in her name is being sold to raise funds for the TCT charity.

Ms Jones' mother, Kay, said she was by her daughter's bedside for a year when she had to spend time in a children's ward at the age of 14 because she was too young to be treated in an adult ward.

Confident and independent

The experience left Ms Jones feeling isolated but she was in remission following a year of treatment.

The news that the cancer had returned and had spread to her lungs came three years later.

Pink rose The Teenage Spirit Rose is a variety of floribunda rose developed by Jennifer's parents

Mrs Jones said her daughter found the subsequent stay in a special teenage unit based at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham much more relaxing.

The 52-year-old said: "She was able to meet other young people with cancer for the first time, which boosted her confidence and gave her some independence.

"Sadly, this time, Jennifer's body could not fight the hold the cancer had on her.

"We brought her home, surrounded her by her favourite flower, a pink rose, and said our goodbyes.

"In the last few days of her life Jennifer discussed her wish to fundraise for Teenage Cancer Trust as she didn't want other young people to be treated on a children's ward.

"That was Jennifer all over, always thinking of others."

TCT currently has 21 units across the UK with a further 11 in development.

A spokesperson for the charity said: "The units are all different sizes depending on requirement and space available and cost between £500,000 and £4m to build.

"Once the unit is open, we help maintain and also refurbish them when needed in partnership with the NHS."

A pink floribunda rose called Teenage Spirit Rose will be sold at Homebase stores.

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