Family of Rastrick girl plea for more research into cancer that killed her

Fifi Hagreen
Fifi Hagreen

The heartbroken family of a six-year-old girl from Rastrick who died from an aggressive cancer are sharing her story in the hope more research will be done into the devastating condition.

Little Sofia Hagreen, known as Fifi, was killed by DIPG - a tumour which forms on the brainstem and is impossible to operate on.

She had been a healthy child until just a few months before she was diagnosed.

Her parents, Julia and Darren, took Fifi - a pupil at Carr Green Primary School - to their GP several times after noticing changes in their daughter. She was speaking slightly differently, would cry when she woke up, started drooling and struggled to swallow.

Each time they were told it was a virus and low blood sugar but then Fifi became extremely clumsy and would lose concentration, frequently repeating herself.

After CT and MRI scans, they were told their little girl had an incurable brain tumour and had, at most, a year to live.

She fought the cancer for another seven-and-a-half months before dying in April.

“Despite the horror surrounding us, laughter somehow got us through,” said Julia, who is also mum to eight-year-old Mollie and four-year-old George.

“Even when bed-ridden and blind in her last few weeks, we still managed to make her laugh and she made us laugh.

“She was the most amazing little human I’ll ever know and I was lucky enough to be her mummy.

“I’m too heartbroken to start fundraising for research myself just yet -it’s only four months since we lost her - but I hope to in time, like so many heartbroken DIPG parents do so well, desperate for there to be a change in this disease.

“Fifi was an extremely fun-loving, caring, kind-natured little girl with an amazing sense of humour and imagination. Mollie always said Fifi made up the best story’s at bed time. She had a very mature outlook on life for one so young.

“She was just amazing and handled everything with such dignity and bravery. I don’t know any adult who would have been as courageous as she was.”

To donate in FiFi’s memory visit www.abbiesarmy.co.uk. Her family are also urging people to sign a petition urging for more funding for research into DIPG which can be found at www.petition.parliament.uk/petitions/269637