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Last Updated: Tuesday, 27 February 2007, 12:52 GMT
Cancer girl 'dies with dignity'
Josie Grove
Josie Grove was nominated for bravery awards
A teenage leukaemia patient from Northumberland, who shunned treatment to spend more time with her family, has died "with dignity", her family said.

Josie Grove, 16, from Corbridge, said in December that she wanted to enjoy what remained of her life after a series of gruelling treatments failed.

She was nominated for a bravery award by nurses, after declaring: "I've had enough of hospitals".

The teenager died at home on Monday, surrounded by her family.

Before Christmas the talented artist and swimmer said: "A course of drugs I took in September left me feeling ill, shaky and aching, and it didn't do much to fight the cancer.

"I want to get on with my life and enjoy spending time with my family."

She was very strong, so determined and very clear in her thinking
Dr Rod Skinner, Newcastle General Hospital

She died with her parents, Cliff and Jacqui, by her side, along with brothers Freddie, 13, and 10-month-old Charlie, and her 11-year-old sister Libby.

A family statement said: "Josie Madeline Grove passed away peacefully with grace and dignity at home in the arms of her family after a two-and-a-half-year battle with leukaemia.

"The Grove family would like to thank all of those who gave what can only be described as overwhelming support during her final months and which helped give her strength and courage to carry on during her illness.

"It's Josie's wish that she be remembered as the girl who was always smiling. She will be dearly missed."

'Lovely lady'

The teenager's courage was recognised by the Brave Hearts charity, based in Hexham, and she was honoured with 11 other local children in a ceremony at Newcastle United's St James's Park ground in December.

The paediatric oncology consultant who treated Josie, described her as "a lovely young lady".

Dr Rod Skinner, the Newcastle General Hospital bone marrow transplant expert said: "She was very strong, so determined and very clear in her thinking.

"She was truly remarkable, and I don't say that lightly.

"She was able to think things through, very difficult things, in a very clear way, much more than one might expect in someone of her age."

He said she and her family only halted treatment after exploring all possible options.

Josie Grove on why she chose not to have treatment



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