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I am Sarah, Jessica’s mum and this is Jessica!

Jessica was loud, funny and absolutely crazy at times. Jessica was fiercely loyal, particularly about her family. From an early age Jessica struggled academically and school for many years was never her happiest place. Jessica’s special talent was sport, she tried most sports including swimming, tennis, karate, football and rugby. Jessica loved everything about sport, the competition, being accepted by her peers for her sporting ability and mostly monday morning showing off her newest bruise from a rugby injury.

At seven years old Jessica began playing rugby, she found her passion! Jessica played in most of the Warwickshire local clubs and played for Warwickshire county for several years. When Jessica was 15 she was selected for RFU Centre of Excellence at Worcester Warriors, she loved Saturday morning and was amazed every time we walked into Six ways Stadium for her to train there.

Jessica loved playing football while she was younger, she watched most football matches her greatest love was attending Birmingham City matches, followed by Real Madrid FC. Her football banter with her friends was when you would hear the loudest laugh. She loved nothing more than wearing a Spanish football shirt while England were playing in international games.

In March 2020 as a family we thought life was difficult we were in a global pandemic Covid–19. How wrong we were our ‘normal’ was about to fall apart and our ‘normal’ family life would never return!

Jessica woke up on 1st May with a headache after a CT scan she was taken into hospital. On 1st June the devastation to our perfect family turned into any parent’s worst nightmare. As the neurosurgeon spoke I felt like I was floating away this wasn’t happening to us. “I’m really sorry, the biopsy has come back, Jessica has Stage 4 cancer in the brain Glioblastoma’ Over the next few days we were told this was terminal for Jessica. We needed to be strong and ensure Jessica was living her best life for the time she had left.

Jessica was amazing over the next few months she would say ‘I’ve got something to say, but I don’t want you to cry’ Jessica would then start to talk about her death, her funeral and life after. As a family we sat and listened while she casually chatted about her worries as only Jessica could, our family life as we knew it was devastated while Jessica was organising the most traumatic time of our lives.

We want to keep Jessicas memory alive, but not as a perfect princess, because she was not. We want her to be remembered as the troublemaker that she was and as a teen that found solace in the sporting world. Jessica’s illness did not make her a fighter nor a warrior, she was a girl who just wanted to live her life. Our Jessica!