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Beanies for Billy

Students at Gippsland Grammar’s Garnsey campus wore beanies yesterday in memory of much-loved former student Billy Adams who died of brain cancer last year.

Billy began at Grammar’s Bairnsdale campus in 2007 as a Year 3 student before moving to Garnsey Campus in Sale. He lived with his family in Lakes Entrance, then at Grammar’s boarding house during his senior years.

Billy was first diagnosed with brain cancer in January 2016 as he was to begin Year 12. At the time, experts thought he would only have 12 months to live. In 2017, while still undergoing chemotheraphy treatment, he insisted on going back to school to complete Year 12 and graduate from Gippsland Grammar.

Having gone into remission, Billy accepted a university place in Arts but by the second semester of 2018 he was offered a place to study Law. During the mid-term break he enjoyed a trip to Italy.

However, Billy returned home with headaches, which quite simply meant his cancer was on the move again. Dr Charlie Teo removed a large section but couldn’t get it all, and months of rehab followed.

Dr Teo offered Billy one of the first clinical trials in Australia for medical cannibas oil and, in January 2019, he also went to China for immunotherapy and photo sono dynamic treatment.

Billy gave his best effort in every treatment option made available to him but he could not beat this hideous disease. He died in June last year, aged 20.

Billy’s death rocked the Gippsland Grammar school community.

“Billy taught us the true meaning of resilience and courage,” they said.

Gippsland Grammar described him as “a dedicated student, who loved representing our school in the swimming pool.”

After staff and students at Garnsey campus enthusiastically took part in yesterday’s Wear a Beanie to School day, the school hopes to make it an annual event to remember Billy, and to raise awareness and much-needed funds for brain cancer research.

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Photos and information about Billy provided by Gippsland Grammar.

If you would like to make donation, click: Beanies 4 Brain Cancer

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