Meet the Murrell Family

Meet the Murrell Family


Matilda (Tilly) is a busy little girl from Hervey Bay overflowing with life and sass. From the moment her eyes open in the morning Tilly is ready for adventure. Enjoying play group, walking down to the lagoon, feeding the resident ducks and going for walks on the esplanade with her bike. Growing into the social butterfly, Tilly’s favourite activity was to visit her neighbours or jump around on the trampoline.

Starting another exciting new chapter, Tammy and Michael were busy as could be with their two children and their third on the way. In what should have been an exciting time for this young family, Tammy went into labour five weeks early and after spending a week in care in hospital, Tammy was able to return home to celebrate Tilly’s second birthday. However, Tammy and Michael started to notice something different about their usually vibrant little girl.

Tilly’s behaviour had suddenly changed; asking to be carried more, sweating while she slept, becoming pale and a sudden dislike towards one of her favourite pastimes, swimming. On 8 February 2023, Tammy and Michael decided to take Tilly for what was planned to be a quick doctor’s check-up.

After one quick look at Tilly, the GP sent them straight to the emergency room for an immediate blood transfusion. Later that night their worst fear became a reality as the doctors conveyed their concerns that they were almost certain Tilly had cancer. Immediately, Michael and Tilly were flown from Hervey Bay to Brisbane. Tammy drove down after them the following morning.

Just a short 24 hours later, on 9 February , Tilly was officially diagnosed with Leukaemia. A flurry of fears and questions began to torment Tammy and Michael as their new reality of blood transfusions and chemotherapy began to set in.

“Are we going to lose our child? Could we of prevented this or caught it earlier, and where do we stay with three children?”

The social worker quickly prepared accommodation arrangements for their family, however their 9-year-old would be unable to stay with them. Separated from each other, their family faced new struggles every day with their newborn and lack of access to hot water. The plan was not working, and Tammy and Michael needed another solution where they were able to stay together. Childhood Cancer Support stepped in and filled the gap for Tammy and Michael.

“Childhood Cancer Support has been so important to us. It’s given us a beautiful home base with all the essentials we need from a fully functional kitchen to supplying clippers for when Tilly was sick of picking her hair out of stuff.”

Tilly’s treatment has been a tough journey, but she has done a fantastic job hitting all her goals on the treatment path. However, it has not been without its share of hurdles.

“Without Childhood Cancer Support I’m not sure how we would have been able to get through the last six months. Thanks to Childhood Cancer Support we’ve been able to stay together as a family unit and live our life as normal as possible with routine and the comforts of home. We went from having to stay in Brisbane for a maximum of 3 to 8 months and Childhood Cancer Support provides long-term accommodation without the worry of moving”.


CCS Family Stories

  • Share This

Related Posts