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Jemima​ Gazley's cancer journey legacy: 'If I can't be cured, I'll be the cure' – Stuff.co.nz

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Bess Manson looks at the short, extraordinary life of teenager Jemima Winter-Belle Gazley, who died trying to help cure the disease that claimed her life.
The night before she died, Jemima​ Gazley​ joked she would soon go to meet the “final boss’’.
When she did die, peacefully at the age of 15, she was holding the hands of her mother and father.
It was a terrible privilege to be there as she took her last breaths – they were there when she took her first.
But Ray and Oliver Gazley knew Jemima had nailed it in her short time on the planet.
READ MORE:
* Jemima raises $650,000 for cancer research, but her legacy is much more than money
* Wellington Paranormal auctioning props for Jemima’s fundraiser
* ‘A very brave and special person’: Tributes pour in for Wellington teen who raised more than $550,000 for cancer research
* Terminally ill Wellington teen slips into unconsciousness having raised close to $400,000

Her beautifully ordinary life became an extraordinary one when, having accepted her own terminal cancer diagnosis, she decided to be part of the cure if she couldn’t be cured herself.
In her final two weeks she crowdfunded more than $725,000 for researchers looking for a cure and better treatment for the cancer that ended her life just nine months after diagnosis.
Perhaps even more importantly, she donated her brain tumour and tissue to the cause. “If they can’t take it out while I’m alive, Mum, they can take it out when I’m dead,” she had said.
Jemima died knowing she had done something pretty big.
Her life had changed on the turn of a dime.
After a family dinner on Waitangi Day 2021 she woke up feeling woozy. The next day she vomited. On Thursday her parents noticed she had a slight slur.
An MRI showed a tumour.
Within 10 days she went from seemingly fighting fit to a terminal diagnosis: diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), an awful acronym translated as a malignant aggressive tumour in the brain stem. The spiderweb-like tumour, often referred to as The Hitchhiker by the family, was inoperable.
Jemima’s parents were told that the only treatment pathway was palliative care and that she had between nine months to a year life expectancy.
She looked at her life after that in chapters – the diagnosis, the treatment, living with cancer and dying with cancer.
The goal was always to make that third chapter the longest. The fourth chapter was the one they wanted to avoid, but Jemima knew that was inevitable.
She accepted her truncated future as a fait accompli.
There were moments of fear and sadness, but that third chapter was one of great fun and laughter and enlightenment, her parents say.
“She was always laughing. She never stopped being a bolshy big sister to her brothers. Strangely enough her life got better,” Oliver says from the family home in Seatoun a little more than a month after his only daughter’s death.
She lived every day well. She’d go with her mother to the thrift stores on K Road after treatment, snapping up her beloved vintage fashion.
She volunteered with the SPCA at home in Wellington looking after the ‘’scaredy-cats’’ who had not had the best start in life.
She’d love nothing more than to go out to a restaurant, even when she was losing her appetite.
Her gallows humour may have shocked those who witnessed it, but it helped her face the fear. A natural comedienne, she told her parents her brain tumour had unlocked a whole new realm of comedy.
“If you don’t have a brain tumour you can’t go there, but once you’re in my shoes, f*#!, it’s rich for the picking,” she said.
There was fear, anger. There was sadness.
Sometimes she would say she just needed time alone, but these feelings were not the dominant feature of her existence, Oliver says.
She made light of her disease under the weight of its seriousness. ‘Ah Mama’, she would say, ‘Tis but a scratch’.
At her funeral her mother described the four versions of Jemima:
The first was the easy baby, the older sister who was good to her two brothers, Theo and Rudy.
A netballer; a hip-hopper; a baker who dreamed of working in a Parisian pâtisserie; a skier; a sun-worshipper; a traveller; a girl with an appreciation for a decent buffet breakfast.
She was a budding feminist who fought against period shaming.
While at intermediate school she campaigned to get more sanitary disposal units. She wrote to the male principal articulating why one unit was hardly enough for the entire school. Before long units were dispensed in all bathrooms.
She was a burgeoning activist who went on climate change protests.
She had a strong sense of social justice and stood up to bullies at school.
She was a friend and an ally to the LGBQTI community. An upstander for inclusively, her friends would say.
The second version of Jemima was the teen.
Life was good – a boyfriend, good mates, skiing with dad.
But there was another side to this teenhood, says Ray.
“The dissatisfaction for who she was with her teenage self because her perception of who she was in life was not adequate.”
She was able to express this during what Ray called the third version of Jemima: the enlightened girl who carried the burden of a terminal diagnosis lightly, with humour and with no shortage of grace.
The supernova burning its brightest light before it would cease, says Ray.
The cancer gave her the ability to see the world as it really is. It was in some strange way a gift, she says.
“All of the things she saw as big problems as a teenager suddenly seemed like nothing. She was released from all that. She got a perspective on life and what really mattered.
“She told me: ‘I cannot regret having this disease Mama. Because Jemima used to cry herself to sleep. She had everything. But she created stories of not having enough – not skinny enough, not pretty enough, not popular enough, not good enough … I think I’m so lucky Mama, because I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in life to know that none of that matters’.”
The fourth version of Jemima was the warrior. The girl who raised more than $725,000 and donated her brain to cancer research.
That Jemima lives on.
She had been in the third chapter – living well with cancer for several months – when in early September she started to lose her balance. Her progression towards that last chapter had begun. Her family knew it and Jemima knew it.
She decided she wanted a party. A dress-up-and-be-merry party. A celebration of life, she called it.
She knew in herself that things had changed and that she was dying, says Ray.
“I think she knew that she was having a living funeral. She loved getting dressed up. She knew she would never get her school ball. That night she wore a black velvet playsuit, and she looked beautiful.”
After the party friends asked what they could do to help.
Up till then she had kept her illness pretty private and many had not known how sick she really was.
Jemima was quite casual when she suggested that instead of asking for practical help that they start a Givealittle page to raise money for research into DIPG.
Ray had been in contact with associate professor Matt Dun in Newcastle, Australia, since Jemima’s diagnosis. Dr Dun had been researching the disease since his 4-year-old daughter died from it.
He had a vendetta against DIPG. So did the Gazleys.
The money could go towards the work he and his team were doing to find better treatment and eventually, a cure.
They sent the Givealittle link to everyone who came to the party – just 50 people under Covid restrictions.
Jemima would put her own savings in – $5382. She hoped to raise around $20,000.
Those 50 people shared the link. Again and again it was shared. It went all the way to Hollywood where Kiwi director Taika Waititi, an old acquaintance of Oliver’s, sprinkled some stardust on it. The money continued to pour in.
The day after the Givealittle page opened Jemima was surprised to see they had already raised $7500.
She decided to ‘’go large’’ and aim higher. She got the bit between her teeth and decided to really go for it, according to Ray. “She said: ‘Share it wherever you can. Let’s make as much as we can.’”
Stuff wrote about Jemima’s efforts and by the following day Oliver was on 2ZB talking about Jemima’s Wish, the name they’d given the fundraiser.
It took off, going from $7500 to $50,000 to $100,000.
She was astounded at the reaction but when Ray read the comments attached to the donations Jemima felt quite overwhelmed.
She felt her actions didn’t warrant the accolades or praise she was getting. She wasn’t looking for that, says Ray.
Nevertheless, it gave her a purpose and a drive at a time when she was deep into her fourth chapter.
For a time she regained her appetite, she was hopeful, excited, positive.
But by Friday 9 October she began to deteriorate. On Sunday, as she held her mother’s hand, she joked she was soon heading off to ‘‘meet the final boss’’ – a term used for the last stage of a computer game.
On Monday morning she went into Hospice.
Just as her Givealittle page was about to close at $400,000 the public called for an extension. The crowdfunding was gathering momentum on social media. Radio stations were fielding calls from people wanting to donate.
Jemima fell unconscious as those donations continued to flow.
Her crowdfunding would eventually reach $725,000.
On the evening of October 12, Jemima died.
She had asked for an open casket at her funeral. She had chosen what she would wear some weeks earlier.
She had often talked about what she would wear at her wedding. Even though she knew that would never come to pass, she dispatched her mother to dig out a wedding dress at a Wellington thrift shop.
She dyed the dress pink in a big pot, stirring it using a big wooden stick with her one working arm.
She knew she was going to wear this for her funeral, Ray says.
But there was no sadness.
“We hung it up on a coat hanger to dry. She looked at it and said, ‘Mum, that looks so great!’ It was like she was going to the prom but in her mind she was building a perfect funeral for herself.”
In her wicker casket, she wore that pink wedding dress. She wore flowers in her dyed pink hair.
On one side of her lay her faithful old teddy bear, on the other a long string of courage beads, each one representing a treatment during her cancer journey. The beads are colour coded – black for blood test, white for chemo, big beads for acts of courage, yellow for nights spent in hospital, and on it goes. Too many beads.
Jemima had been very clear about how she would like to be remembered, her parents say.
Not as someone suffering. Not as someone with an incurable brain tumour. Not someone with cancer and a string of beads to prove it.
She wanted anyone wondering to know that Jemima Gazley is cured. And that she is free.
Artist Piera McArthur, a family friend, captured her sentiment in a painting with the words: “Jemima leaps into the radiance of her new glory.”
Dressed in pink. Cured. Free.
© 2021 Stuff Limited

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How to deal with the Kremlin-created crisis in Europe – Atlantic Council

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Our programs and centers deliver in-depth, highly relevant issue briefs and reports that break new ground, shift opinions, and set agendas on public policy, with a focus on advancing debates by integrating foundational research and analysis with concrete policy solutions.
When major global news breaks, the Atlantic Council’s experts have you covered—delivering their sharpest rapid insight and forward-looking analysis direct to your inbox.
New Atlanticist is where top experts and policymakers at the Atlantic Council and beyond offer exclusive insight on the most pressing global challenges—and the United States’ role in addressing them alongside its allies and partners.
A weekly column by Atlantic Council President and CEO Frederick Kempe, Inflection Points focuses on the global challenges facing the United States and how to best address them.
UkraineAlert is a comprehensive online publication that provides regular news and analysis on developments in Ukraine’s politics, economy, civil society, and culture. UkraineAlert sources analysis and commentary from a wide-array of thought-leaders, politicians, experts, and activists from Ukraine and the global community.
MENASource offers the latest news from across the Middle East, combined with commentary by contributors, interviews with emerging players, multi-media content, and independent analysis from fellows and staff.
IranSource provides a holistic look at Iran’s internal dynamics, global and regional policies, and posture through unique analysis of current events and long-term, strategic issues related to Iran.
UkraineAlert
December 30, 2021
By Eurasia Center
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Editor’s note: Moscow’s buildup of troops on and near Ukraine’s borders and bellicose rhetoric have raised the prospect of a major conventional war in Europe. The phone call today between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin underscores the dangers of this Kremlin-manufactured crisis. Below is a statement by twenty-five distinguished experts and former senior officials offering their ideas on how to deter Moscow from escalating its current war of aggression against Ukraine and more broadly to discourage Moscow from future provocations. The statement represents the views of the signatories and not of their institutions.
Since President Biden’s virtual summit with President Putin on December 7, Russia has increased its troop presence on or near Ukraine’s borders. Having created this crisis, the Kremlin has demanded security guarantees for Russia that the United States and its allies cannot possibly provide. It has made provocative statements at high levels, including outlandish claims that US private military contractors intend to launch a chemical weapons attack in eastern Ukraine. Moscow wrongly asserts that NATO enlargement has created a military threat to Russia; the Alliance has fully abided by its commitments in the NATO-Russia Founding Act to refrain from deploying nuclear weapons or permanently stationing substantial combat forces on the territory of new member states, despite the fact that Russia has violated many of its own Founding Act commitments, as well as the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, the Paris Charter, and the Budapest Memorandum.
In short, Moscow appears to be setting the stage for launching a major conventional assault on Ukraine, even though the United States and NATO have shown a willingness to sit down and discuss Kremlin concerns.
We believe the United States should, in closest consultation with its NATO allies and with Ukraine, take immediate steps to affect the Kremlin’s cost-benefit calculations before the Russian leadership opts for further military escalation. This means raising the costs that would ensue should the Russian military launch a new assault on Ukraine, building on the excellent set of measures the Biden administration has already laid out: enacting punishing sanctions on Moscow, sending major military supplies to Ukraine, and strengthening NATO’s force posture on its eastern flank.
The administration should continue its good work with the European Union and other partners to ensure agreement on the elements of a response to any Russian assault on Ukraine, regardless of the extent or form of Russia’s escalation. Such a response would include a package of major and painful sanctions that would be applied immediately if Russia assaults Ukraine. Ideally, the outline of these sanctions would be communicated now to Moscow, so that the Kremlin has a clear understanding of the magnitude of the economic hit it will face. In particular, Washington should consult with Berlin and secure German agreement that it would prevent Nord Stream 2 from going into operation in the event of a Russian attack, making clear that otherwise the administration will not again waive sanctions on the pipeline.
The most important thing that the West can do now is to enhance the deterrent strength of Ukraine’s armed forces by providing military assistance and equipment on an expedited basis. For the Kremlin, a large invasion of Ukraine works only if Russian forces are able to seize and hold Ukrainian territory without sustaining significant and constant casualties. Western countries should act now to equip Ukraine’s military and territorial defense units with additional capabilities that can impose such costs.
Western military officials should consult urgently with their Ukrainian counterparts as to what assistance and equipment the Ukrainian military needs and could most quickly integrate into its operations to bolster its defensive strength. Such assistance might include additional Javelin anti-armor missiles and Q36 counter-battery radar systems as well as Stinger and other anti-aircraft missiles. The Biden administration should also encourage NATO allies to do more to enhance Ukraine’s defensive capabilities, making clear that the entire NATO Alliance stands together in opposing Russian aggression.
We believe that NATO should act now to begin bolstering its military presence on its eastern flank and communicating to Moscow that Russia’s escalation would bring a substantial number of US and Allied forces and a permanent presence in the Baltic states and Black Sea region. NATO should also signal to Moscow that any additional deployments could be reconsidered if/when the current crisis abates.
The West should also widen its political counteroffensive to retake the initiative from Moscow as it tries to use the threat of force to intimidate Ukraine, Europe, and the United States into acquiescing to its demands, many of which are plainly unjustified and unacceptable. The Biden administration should seek a Group of Seven (G7) statement at the head of state level condemning Moscow’s threat of wider war against Ukraine and work with allies and partners to use other fora, including the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and possibly the United Nations, to highlight the unacceptability of Russian military action and coercive threats.
The Biden administration should consult with NATO, the European Union, Ukraine, and key allies such as Poland on extensive preparations for dealing with the humanitarian crisis that a major Russian invasion would create.
Finally, the United States and its allies should continue to make clear their readiness for dialogue with Russia, to include concerns of NATO and other parties about Russian military and other aggressive activities. They have indicated that some elements in the Russia-proposed US-Russia treaty and NATO-Russia agreement may offer a basis for discussion and possible negotiation. The United States and NATO should make clear to the Kremlin that it must de-escalate the threatening military situation around Ukraine before there can be any substantive negotiation, and any negotiation must involve all parties whose security interests will be affected. These issues cannot simply be resolved in a bilateral US-Russia channel. Moreover, any negotiation should be consistent with the principles agreed to by all NATO members, Russia, and Ukraine, such as those in the Helsinki Final Act and the Charter of Paris.
Signed,

Dr. Stephen Blank
Senior Fellow
Foreign Policy Research Institute
General Philip Breedlove, USAF ret.
17th Supreme Allied Commander Europe
Distinguished Professor, Sam Nunn School, Georgia Institute of Technology
Ian Brzezinski
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Europe and NATO Policy
Senior Fellow
Atlantic Council
Debra Cagan
Former US State and Defense Department official
Distinguished Energy Fellow
Transatlantic Leadership Network
General Wesley K. Clark
US Army (ret.)
12th Supreme Allied Commander, Europe
Senior Fellow, UCLA Burkle Center
Dr. Larry Diamond
Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution
Mosbacher Senior Fellow in Global Democracy
Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Stanford University
Ambassador Paula Dobriansky
Former Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs
Vice Chair, Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security
Atlantic Council
Senior Fellow, Harvard University Belfer Center
Dr. Evelyn Farkas
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia
Ambassador Daniel Fried
Former Assistant Secretary of State for Europe and US Ambassador to Poland
Weiser Family Distinguished Fellow
Atlantic Council
Dr. Francis Fukuyama
Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow
Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law
Director, Ford Dorsey Masters in International Policy
Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Stanford University
Melinda Haring
Deputy Director, Eurasia Center
Atlantic Council
John E. Herbst
Former US Ambassador to Ukraine and Uzbekistan
Senior Director, Eurasia Center
Atlantic Council
Lieutenant General (Ret.) Ben Hodges
Former Commander US Army Europe
Dr. Donald N. Jensen
Director, Russia and Strategic Stability
United States Institute of Peace
Dr. Andrea Kendall-Taylor
Former Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Russia and Eurasia
Senior Fellow and Director, Transatlantic Security Program
Center for a New American Security
Ambassador John Kornblum
Former US Ambassador to Germany
Senior Adviser (Non-resident), Europe, Russia, and Eurasia Program
Center for Strategic International Studies
Robert McConnell
Former Assistant Attorney General, US Department of Justice
Director External Relations, US-Ukraine’s Foundation’s Friends of Ukraine Network (FOUN)
Ambassador Michael McFaul
Former US Ambassador to Russia
Director, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Stanford University
Ambassador Steven Pifer
Former US Ambassador to Ukraine
Willian Perry Fellow
Stanford University
Herman Pirchner, Jr.
President
American Foreign Policy Council
John Sipher
Former Officer and Chief of Station, CIA Clandestine Service
Nonresident Senior Fellow, Eurasia Center
Atlantic Council
Strobe Talbott
Former Deputy Secretary of State
Distinguished Fellow
The Brookings Institution
Ambassador William Taylor
Former US Ambassador to Ukraine
Vice President for Strategic Stability and Security
United States Institute of Peace
Ambassador Alexander Vershbow
Former US Ambassador to Russia
Former Deputy Secretary General of NATO
Distinguished Fellow, Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, Eurasia Center
Atlantic Council
Ambassador Kurt Volker
Former US Ambassador to NATO and US Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations
Distinguished Fellow
Center for European Policy Analysis
UkraineAlert Dec 11, 2021
By Peter Dickinson
One depressing aspect of Russia’s latest military build-up on the Ukrainian border has been the flurry of headlines posing the same question: will Putin invade Ukraine? In reality, Russia has already invaded Ukraine and the war is now in its eighth year.
UkraineAlert Dec 3, 2021
By Oleksii Reznikov
The international community must urgently demonstrate its resolve to punish Russia in order to deter a full-scale invasion of Ukraine that would plunge Europe into chaos, warns Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov.
UkraineAlert Dec 23, 2021
By Andriy Zagorodnyuk, Alina Frolova, Hans Petter Midtunn, Oleksii Pavliuchyk
Ukraine’s military has undergone a major transformation since the outbreak of hostilities with Russia in 2014 but the changes that have taken place are still not fully assessed or understood.
Institutional affiliations are for purposes of identification only. This post was updated on 1/5/2022 to include an additional signatory.
Related Experts: John E. Herbst, John Sipher, Daniel Fried, Alexander Vershbow, Ian Brzezinski, and Ambassador Paula J. Dobriansky
Image: Russian grenade launcher operators take part in combat drills at the Kadamovsky range in the Rostov region, Russia December 14, 2021. REUTERS/Sergey Pivovarov
© 2021 Atlantic Council
All rights reserved.

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Get More Out of Your Small Business Website with These 10 Tips – Small Business Trends

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Your small business website can be one of your biggest assets. But there are so many elements that go into creating a successful site. There’s your content, SEO, marketing, and special features like blogs and ecommerce sections. To make the most of your site, learn from the experts in the online small business community.



Create a Killer Homepage Explainer Video

Your homepage is the perfect spot to give potential new customers an intro to your brand. And video is an amazing way to accomplish this. Learn how in this Pixel Productions post by Natasha Lane. Then head over to BizSugar to see what members are saying.

Niche Your Business and Fix Your Marketing

Your website and other marketing materials are more likely to be effective if you have a clearly defined niche. In fact, many business websites are ineffective because they fail to speak to a specific customer. Learn how to fix your marketing materials with a niche in this Duct Tape Marketing post by Sara Nay.

Improve Your Web Positioning

Web positioning involves creating a digital strategy that includes valuable content on your website and other online content. If you’re looking to improve in this area in 2021, read the trends in this SMB CEO post by Ivan Widjaya.

Get More Opt-Ins from Your Website Content

Content marketing on your website can be an effective way to get opt-ins from potential customers. You may already employ this strategy. But if you’re looking to improve, check out this Content Marketing Institute post by Tom Treanor for tips.

Focus on SEO

Your website can’t make a major impact if no one can find it. So SEO is a must. This concept is especially important for new business websites that want to grow quickly. Tommy Connors elaborates in this Smallbiztechnology.com post.



Learn These Essential Blogging Lessons

A blog can be a major part of your small business website. Or it could even be your main source of content and revenue. If you’re just starting out with this concept, you’ll quickly learn some lessons. Ryan Biddulph shares some in this Blogging From Paradise post.

Consider the Importance of Backlinks

Your website can grow exponentially if other sites link to you. This strategy can be especially effective if you can get backlinks from sites with authority. Even B2B businesses can grow with this strategy. Learn more from this UpCity post by David J. Brin.

Reap the Benefits of Owning an Online Store

Plenty of businesses operate online stores. But even if you’re not specifically running an ecommerce business, an online store may be beneficial. Lisa Sicard of Inspire to Thrive shares why in this post. And BizSugar members offered their input here.

Use IaaS to Grow Your Ecommerce Site

Infrastructure-as-a-service, or IaaS, offers a way to use cloud technology to improve your website. This can be especially beneficial for ecommerce businesses. Read about this concept from Neil Patel here.



Use Website Data to Discover Missed Sales Opportunities

Your website isn’t just a marketing tool. You can also use it to learn more about your customers. In this Search Engine Watch post, Joe Dawson goes over how to use data from your website to make more sales.
If you’d like to suggest your favorite small business content to be considered for an upcoming community roundup, please send your news tips to: sbtips@gmail.com.

Image: Depositphotos 6 Comments ▼


Hello Annie,
Thanks for sharing these helpful tips to grow a small business website. In this competitive online world we need to be vigilant about new techniques and strategies.
Regards,
Vishwajeet Kumar
Hi
This is an excellent post. Every small business must strive to upgrade their knowledge in the ever changing competitive internet world.
These tips are amazing, thanks for sharing. I would like to add one micro tip which is not even in the checklist of many developers but adding this will definitely increase the session time of the user is website view mode, yes you can provide an option for dark mode and light mode that will let them see the wat they wan to see. I hope this will help 🙂
wow excellent post. small businesses must read this to understand and gain an edge in the world out there. thanks for sharing this article
So much useful information in your article. This is going to help me a lot. Thanks for these very informative posts about the business website.Good Luck with the upcoming update!
Valuable information in your post, This is a great way to grow your small business, Thanks for this impressive post.
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Four Indian nationals, including a BABY and teenager, froze to death in -40 blizzard – Daily Mail

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