The family of a brave teenager who died last year after battling a rare form of bone cancer had the lights on the Greenbridge roundabout turned to gold in her honor and to raise awareness of childhood cancer.
Chloë Venton was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma at the age of 15, just before she was due to take her final exam. Taking exams in biology, English, and math just weeks after finishing chemotherapy, she was determined to pursue her dream of one day becoming a pediatrician.
But she died on July 28 last year, aged just 17.
His parents Joanne and Gary said in a statement: “We embarked on this journey as a family to raise awareness because Chloë received the devastating news that she had cancer when she was 15 when she was about to pass her high school graduation and her had his whole life ahead of him, or so we thought.”
“Chloe wouldn’t complain, she would just put a smile on her face and try to continue to achieve her goal of becoming a pediatrician.
“Anyone would tell Chloe that she was such an inspiration with her attitude and work ethic that she was always told how much of a star she was.
“People would say ‘I don’t know how you do it,’ but she wasn’t given a choice.”
Gary and Joanne, from Park South, both felt that there was not enough awareness about Childhood Cancer or Childhood Cancer Month and came up with the idea of changing the color of the lights on the roundabout.
“September was the month for childhood cancer awareness, but ask yourself: have you heard about it on television or radio?
“All cancers and diseases are cruel and need attention, but childhood cancer is the least discussed, yet so devastating,” they said.
“We hope we can let Swindon know the signs and spread awareness. That’s a big achievement and if one child is saved because his cancer is picked up early, it’s worth it.”
Before she died, Chloë set up a charity with the Bone Cancer Research Trust, which has raised £3,618 to date.
A useful slogan was created, based on one of her favorite animals, to help parents recognize the signs of childhood cancer: elephants.
Parents are urged to watch out for excessive bruising, bleeding or rashes, lumps or masses, exhaustion and irritability, persistent bone pain, headaches, the appearance of pale skin, noticeable weight loss, temperatures, and most importantly, seek advice.
Coun Flux, who caused the lighting to change color, said: “This family has been through what many of us couldn’t even comprehend, but they still find the strength to go on and fight this terrible disease for the good of others.
“They are a real inspiration to me and many others.