Moray teenager battling cancer celebrates 18th birthday with big bash despite prognosis

A fundraising walk has been organised to support a Moray teenager, who has been told she may have just “months to live” in her cancer battle.

Dion Yates celebrated her 18th birthday at the weekend, attending a party with 70 family and friends at Lossiemouth Bowling Club.

But the festivities came just days after the teenager’s family was told a tumour, which had been confined to her hip, had now spread to her spine and was now affecting her blood.

Despite the prognosis, party-goers got into the spirit for the teenager’s birthday with a night of dancing and music.

And she was given an extra surprise when the boss of Red Hot Limos in Inverness was moved by her courage and offered one of his luxury vehicles free of charge.

A gruelling 22-hour operation that could have led to Miss Yates’ leg being amputated has now been cancelled.

But her mother has refused to give up hope that a “miracle cure” could yet save her daughter and has dedicated herself to finding alternative treatments.

Last week, Miss Yates visited her old school friends at Lossiemouth High School and attended Moray College, where she had been due to start a course in child care last year, prior to her diagnosis.

A fundraising walk from Findhorn to Lossiemouth has also been organised on May 13 to raise funding for a wet room for Dion at her Lossiemouth home.

And more than 50 people have joined the 15-mile coastal expedition, christened “Do It For Dion”, to raise money for a trip to Mexico next month for treatment.

Mrs Yates has pledged to complete an intense two-week detox with her daughter in an effort to “starve” the cancer of energy.

She added: “Everyone has been so supportive. Her life has been dictated to by doctors for so long we decided it would be good to let her have two weeks of just doing normal things.

“She loves monkeys and got a monkey experience at Edinburgh Zoo as a present so we’re going there this week.

“She’s in a lot of pain and sleeps a lot, but is still the same girl. As soon as we got the news, I started looking into alternatives – I can’t sit back and do nothing.”

To register for “Do It For Dion”, e-mail