100th Birthday celebration in memory

We spoke with Julia Buck, from Norwich, Norfolk who told us the story of four generations of her family coming together in support of Myeloma UK

Fundraising News // 29th May 2020

Julia’s mother Catherine Newson, sadly passed away from myeloma in 2007. Earlier this year, Julia’s grandmother Dorothy Neal (Catherine’s mother) celebrated her 100th birthday and, instead of gifts, Dorothy asked for donations to Myeloma UK in memory of Catherine, her youngest daughter.

“My mum, Catherine, was a very rare and wonderful person and was devoted to her family. Her personal values of right and wrong, of always considering the needs of others and her strong views about the environment, were not just words she used, they were the principles by which she lived her life and enriched the lives of those she met” – Julia

Myeloma patient Catherine fundraising in memory Myeloma UK



Catherine was diagnosed with myeloma in 2003 at the age of 56. After recovering from chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant, Catherine decided that she wanted to offer help and support to other patients. Unfortunately, at the time, there was very little local support for people in a similar situation.

With the help of another myeloma patient, Denny Murphy, the pair created a local myeloma support group. They received from the local hospital consultant, specialist nurses and the local MP, the group soon thrived with regular meetings, guest speakers, fundraising and social events. She also spent her time volunteering at her local hospital.


“This is a testament to the person she was, in that she wanted to help others while she herself needed help.” – Julia

Catherine was a very much-loved grandmother and had three granddaughters. Amy, her eldest grandchild, wanted to support her great grandmother Dorothy’s birthday and set up a Facebook fundraiser to help raise awareness of myeloma and to add the donations to the 100th birthday collection.

Dorothy with Julia and Amy fundraising in memory Myeloma UK

Julia, Dorothy and Amy


Collectively, the family raised around £340 in honour of Dorothy’s birthday. During her life, Catherine contributed nearly £2,500 to Myeloma UK through regular giving and other donations.

“Whilst my mum wasn’t able to be here to celebrate her mother’s milestone birthday, raising funds in memory of her made it feel as if she was part of it and enabled a positive contribution in her memory.” – Julia

Myeloma UK’s Individual and Planned Giving Manager Claire Holmyard said: “We pass on our warmest wishes to Dorothy for her 100th Birthday and want to say a huge thank you to all the family for choosing to support Myeloma UK in memory of Catherine. It means so much to us to share in this special celebration of life and to be able to help more people affected by myeloma because of their generosity.”

On behalf of everyone at Myeloma UK we want to wish Dorothy many happy returns and to say a huge thank you to her family for raising funds to support our work in memory of Catherine.

Contact or call 0131 557 3332 if you would like to raise funds for a birthday or special occasion.