A Thomas Bennett GCSE student passed his exams despite battling cancer for the past three years and sitting them in his hospital bed.
David Hayward, 16, from Tollgate Hill, has been undergoing regular chemotherapy and operations since he was diagnosed with Leukaemia at the age of 13.
Despite going to Royal Marsden Hospital every three weeks, becoming ill from chemotherapy and undergoing monthly operations, he continued to study for his GCSEs with a one-to-one tutor who visited him at home and hospital and he surprised himself with his results which included a B in Science and English.
David described how it felt to take exams from his hospital bed.
He said: “Being in a room with two people staring at you, there’s a lot of pressure.
“I occasionally managed to get into school to do some which was easier.”
The modest teen added: “I said if I got one above a D I’ll be happy so I’m happy with these results.”
He said he was grateful for the one-to-one tuition which made it possible for him to continue his studies.
David will undergo a routine operation in November this year which will involve extracting cells from the bone marrow in his spine to check for signs of the disease. This will hopefully be the final operation he has to have.
His mother Trica said she was so proud of his determination to continue with his studies.
She said: “I wasn’t too worried about his grades because he’s been so ill but I was just amazed how well he did.
“Chemo has been quite an ordeal for him. It was horrific, you can’t even imagine what it was like.
“He’s been amazing, he’s taken it all in his stride even when he feels really ill he just keeps at it.”
David is going to stay at secondary school for another year, to catch up with subjects he had to drop, before going to sixth form to study photography and work skills.
Trica added that David’s sister Sarah, 17, took her AS level exams this year.
Trica said: “David being ill has affected her as they’re very close but we’ve all stuck together and we got through it.”