Cranford: Kindhearted Jessica pedals for charity

A KIND-HEARTED teenager has completed an energy-sapping challenge after being inspired to get active by her two grandfathers.

Jessica Balaam, 14, from Cransford near Framlingham, recently pedalled 25 miles in aid of two charities.

The youngster decided to complete the sponsored cycle after her grandfather, Fred Chastney, died from cancer in September last year at the age of 64.

Her other grandfather, Stan Balaam, 62, also discovered he was ill around the same time and is undergoing chemotherapy treatment at Ipswich Hospital.

Jessica was determined to do something to help and she recently completed a sponsored cycle ride in aid of Cancer Research and Macmillan Nurses.

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The student at Thomas Mills High School, in Framlingham, was accompanied by her mother, Allison, for the challenge, which raised �645.

Her proud mother, 35, said: “Fred’s death was very sudden and came as a huge shock to us all, especially Jessica.

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“She decided she wanted to do something to help other people who had suffered or were suffering from cancer, even though she knew it wouldn’t help the grandad she had already lost. Without any prompting she decided on a sponsored cycle and I agreed to join in for moral support.

“It was tough going but we did it – completing the 25 miles in two hours 45 minutes.

“I’m so proud of what she’s achieved. When she set out she didn’t have a target in mind – she just said she wanted to raise as much money as possible. It’s fantastic.”

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