#babysister | #nanny | Derry Girls actress, four, diagnosed with leukaemia


Derry Girls actress Zoe Brown, who played Anna the baby sister of Erin, has been diagnosed with leukaemia. Zoe, who shared the role with twin sister Sophie has begun chemotherapy.

Zoe appeared in the second and third seasons of the hit Channel 4 comedy and was diagnosed with leukaemia seven weeks ago after her mum noticed she was looking pale and took her to the doctors, reports BelfastLive.

She has had multiple bone marrow biopsies and has started a course of chemotherapy and steroids treatments.

Mum Leah said: “I think I was just in a daze, I still sort of am to be honest. “I didn’t have time to process it, to let it sink in, as the treatment started the next day (after the first biopsy).

“She’s been in theatre so many times, she gets lumbar punctures to put chemo in her spinal fluid as well and that’s done under anaesthetic. You never think your child is going to be in theatre at all and the last seven weeks, she has been in loads of times.”

Derry Girls creator Lisa McGee said: “I am so sorry Zoe is going through this. She’s the most wonderful little girl and we are lucky to have her as part of our Derry Girls family.

“I’m sending her and her family strength and love.”

The side effects of Zoe’s treatment meant she has lost much of her hair. Leah said: “I know that’s not the main concern, but it’s the saddest wee bit for her.

“Zoe just had the longest, thickest hair and it was the first thing anyone talked about when they saw her. We met other little girls up at the children’s ward and they’re beautiful and so lovely, they have no hair either, but they’ve made her feel better about the whole thing.

“It’s amazing up there though, it really is, the consultants and nurses are absolutely brilliant.

“Zoe has just been amazing, she’s so resilient,” she said.

Zoe with mum Leah before starting her treatment (Image: Supplied)

“She’s laughing and smiling, it’s heart-breaking, but she’s been amazing. She’s learned to swallow her tablets and even when the nurses come near her, she just lets them work away.

“It’s just crazy the amount that she’s been through and the amount that she’s going to have to go through.”

Leah has had to give up her work in the meantime to focus on looking after Zoe as she goes through the treatment. A family friend has set up a fundraiser to try and help the family in their time of need.

“I’m just overwhelmed by everyone’s help and support, everyone has been so kind and wanting to help.

“It’s just unbelievable, people are just amazing, they really, really are. I can’t work at the minute, I’ve no option, I thought at the start I might be able to work from home.

“But I didn’t realise how intense the treatment was for leukaemia, it’s going to be in phases, chemo and treatment up until Christmas time. Then for two years after that she’ll have chemo and treatment, which won’t be as intense, it’s called maintenance.”

It’s hoped Zoe can attend school in the new year – she had been due to start this September. “Sophie (Zoe’s twin) will be starting P1 on her own, which is sad as well,” said Leah.

“You never think it’s going to happen, you have little twin girls and they’re starting primary school and Sophie’s going on her own now.”

Leah said her only focus now is on making sure Zoe has every chance to get well again.





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