Lifestyle

Mum Linda shares brave Jack’s story

A SURVIVOR: Jack Mantova is now fighting fit thanks to the support of the Leukaemia Foundation.
A SURVIVOR: Jack Mantova is now fighting fit thanks to the support of the Leukaemia Foundation.

TWO weeks after his 17th birthday, Jack Mantova was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia.

Only 12 days prior he said goodbye to his pop, who had also been diagnosed with leukaemia.

After nearly a year spent in Greenslopes Private Hospital, with months of gruelling chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant at Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, Jack was declared to be in remission. He returned to his Clifton home in late July this year.

Last night Jack's mother, Linda, spoke at the Leukaemia Foundation's heart-warming awareness raising event, Light the Night. Light the Night was held at Toowoomba's Queens Park at sunset.

Jack, the ambassador for the Toowoomba event, led hundreds of participants with coloured lanterns in an uplifting display of hope and compassion for blood cancer patients and their families. Here's Jack's story - the speech spoken by Linda Mantova at the event last night.

"IT WAS December, 2013 … My husband, Steve, and I, had a happy and comfortable life, and our three children, Jack, Sarah, and Lucy were high achievers in their chosen sporting and school life.

But little did we know that our world was about to crumble around us.

Our son, Jack, complained of tiredness and a lack of appetite while we were in Sydney visiting his grandfather, who was recently diagnosed with leukaemia.

Pop passed away on Jack's 17th birthday, on December 1, 2013, and Jack was himself, diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia just 12 days later.

It is hard for me to think back to that day, as I couldn't believe what was happening around me.

My seemingly fit, strong and healthy 17-year-old son was sick … very sick.

The day Jack was diagnosed we travelled straight to Brisbane and that night, he was admitted to Greenslopes Private Hospital for the start of five cycles of chemotherapy.

The Leukaemia Foundation was right there on the spot, organising accommodation for my family that night in Brisbane, and for the next 10 days at a motel nearby.

There was so much happening and so much information to absorb, it was hard to get our heads around where we would live for the next seven and a half months.

But again, the Leukaemia Foundation came to the rescue and arranged a unit for our family at the Clem Jones Sunland Leukaemia Village at Coopers Plains.

That was to be our home for the many months of chemotherapy at Greenslopes and the Icon Cancer Centre at the Mater Private Hospital, and ultimately Jack's bone marrow transplant at the Royal Brisbane and Women's hospital, and his subsequent recovery.

We came home to Clifton on July 25 this year, after what no family, or 17-year-old, should ever have to go through.

We cannot speak highly enough of the staff at the Clem Jones Leukaemia Village or the foundation as a whole.

They made life so much easier for us during a very traumatic time, providing us a home away from home and a caring ear when we needed it.

Jack is now doing well and has returned to school and his position as school captain of Clifton State High School. He is looking forward to his Year 12 formal, graduation and schoolies, of course.

So on behalf of Jack and my entire family - I would like to thank the Leukaemia Foundation for all their help on this journey."

Topics:  leukaemia, light the night, warwick



Council secures $100,000 for public projects

JAZZ UP YOUR IDEA: The Jumpers and Jazz in July committee was one of the recipients of last year's Regional Arts Development Fund grants.

$100,000 in arts fund up for grabs on the Southern Downs.

New bridge honours cherished Southern Downs resident

Signs for the newly named bridge will now be installed with the cost to be funded from the bridge budget.

The recently constructed Tummaville Rd bridge has been named.

Bali flight chaos: What you need to know today

Tourists are finding themselves caught in Bali, or unable to fly, after a volcanic ash cloud developed over the Indonesian island.

Jetstar was forced to cancel seven flights on Tuesday

Local Partners

9000 reasons to support our community clubs

Community clubs are good at what they do. They are not so good at telling the world about what they do, as Clubs Queensland CEO Doug Flockhart explains.


Katy Perry gets naked to encourage people to vote

Katy Perry in Funny Or Die sketch

Katy Perry has stripped naked for a comedy video

Jogging Tom Hanks crashes wedding in Central Park

Tom Hanks stopped for a selfie with this bride and groom

MOVIE REVIEW: Storks delivers family fun

A scene from the movie Storks.

ANIMATION can be hit or miss but when it hits, it hits hard.

Nick 'the snake' to call the shots on Survivor jury

Australian Survivor contestant Nick Iadanza.

LATEST evictee is out of the game but will still have a say.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber split

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber have split after 11 years together.

Why Chris Hemsworth was spotted wearing nail polish

RED CARPET: Do you think Chris Hemsworth is the typical unpolished but well-natured Aussie bloke?

He's now officially the best bloke in Australia

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Rural properties expected to soar as investors seek income

Rural properties are should become highly sought after

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.