I was first introduced to Maria Douglass back in June of 2008 when doing a very early stint of work experience for the Evening Chronicle in Newcastle. From then on we talked on a regular basis. The thing is though; I didn’t know Maria for too long as, earlier in 2008 she was diagnosed with incurable bowel cancer, that later spread. Not knowing her well is a feeling I will always regret as, even though she was so ill, she was always full of high spirits, conversation, and had willingness to advice, on anything.

Maria, of Wrekenton in Gateshead, passed away in mid-2009 after a fantastic fundraising push from her family and friends to find funds that were needed to pay for the drug, Avastin. It was medication that, at that time, gave her so little but very precious time with those she loved the most. It was expensive as well. The drug alone was being priced at some £2,400 per month for an estimated 10 months worth of treatment.

Maria though, through all those bad times towards the end of her short life, took the time to give someone like myself the guidance and motivation through what were some dark times. All I can do is say thank you to her for those words of wisdom. Those conversations we had did then, and do now, mean everything to me.

Since those days I have also become acquainted to her sisters, Julie and Barbara. Both of whom, along with other friends and family of Maria’s, been raising money in their beloved sister’s memory. I amongst others am proud of all that they do in their sister’s memory. And anything that I can do for them in the coming months and years, I will. They, and their sister, mean that much to me.

Thank you Maria, as well as Julie and Barbara, for your support and advise over the years.



About petermannwriter

Freelance (Sports/Music) Journalist

Posted on 12/10/2012, in In Memoriam. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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