A terminally ill 19-year-old has raised £1.3m ($2.2m) for the Teenage Cancer Trust after his request for funds went viral online. Stephen Sutton, from Staffordshire in England’s West Midlands, is terminally ill with colorectal cancer. He hit his original target of £1m just after 11am on Wednesday using his JustGiving page.
Funds have kept pouring in all day today and the total currently stands at around £1.3m with no reason to believe the pace of donations will slow down.
The teenager has been suffering from cancer since he was 15 years old, and was told last year that it had become inoperable. The news promoted him to write a ‘bucket list’ of 46 things he wanted to do before he died.
He was helped in his fundraising efforts by celebrities including Jason Manford and Piers Morgan, both of whom assisted his Twitter hashtag #StephensStory to start trending on the social media site.
Good news about his fundraising has come at a bleak time. Stephen posted news about his deteriorating condition on his Facebook page on Monday, saying: “Currently I am in a very vulnerable position and do not know what will happen next.
“My right lung has collapsed and I am very weak (I’m finding it hard to type this message)
“I will fight as hard as I can, but if the worst happens I just want to say thank you all for sharing the journey with me- it’s been wonderful.”
On Tuesday, he posted an update saying he was signing off.
“It’s a final thumbs up from me! I’ve done well to blag things as well as I have up till now, but unfortunately I think this is just one hurdle too far.
“It’s a shame the end has come so suddenly – there’s so many people I haven’t got round to properly thank or say goodbye too. Apologies for that.
“That’s it from me. But life has been good. Very good.
“Thank you to my mum and the rest of my family for everything.
“Thank you to my friends for being amazing. Thank you to my medical team for the hard work and effort they’ve continually they’ve put towards me. And thank you everyone else for sharing this wonderful journey with me. I love you all. x”
You can donate to the Teenage Cancer Trust here.