Glasswells staff member shares fight with leukaemia in new book

Jake Andrade, a weekend assistant at Glasswells Place to Eat restaurant in Bury St Edmund, was first diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia at the age of 13. After a 5-year remission, his Leukaemia returned and now, in his second remission, Jake’s book ‘My Leukaemia Fight’ provides a comprehensive account of his six-year journey with AML.

In March 2016, Jake Andrade was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML). Following a bone marrow transplant in August 2016, and five years in remission, the Leukaemia was thought to be “cured”. In May 2019, whilst working at Glasswells onsite restaurant in Bury St Edmunds, Jake Andrade attended the University of Suffolk where he studied Politics & History.

Unfortunately, on 17th December 2021 at 19 years old, Jake was informed that his Acute Myeloid Leukaemia had returned. Just 6 days later, on 23rd December, Jake was admitted to the Teenage Cancer Trust Ward at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, for three rounds of chemotherapy and a second stem cell transplant. Between December 2021 and May 2022, he was an inpatient on the ward, returning home for short breaks between rounds of treatment.

From his first treatment for AML, Jake kept a diary to enable him to express his thoughts and feelings and one day reflect on how far he has come from his diagnosis. After 195,000 words, 13 drafts and almost seven years, this diary has now become an inspiring story which has touched the hearts of many people.

‘My Leukaemia Fight’ tells the story of Jake’s initial diagnosis and treatment at the age of 13, all the way through to his recovery and second stem cell treatment. As well as attempting to put the general reader in the shoes of a cancer patient, this incredibly courageous story can provide hope for patients and their families that it is possible to bounce back from a devastating cancer diagnosis.

Jake Andrade explains “I wrote this story to share my experiences through both paediatrics and adult life with cancer, two bone marrow transplants, a lengthy remission period in between, and my attempts to rebuild my life after cancer. I wanted to inform readers about the symptoms of leukaemia, treatment and how having cancer affects not only the patient, but also their family and friends. I hope any cancer patients will be able relate to this and enable them to be remain hopeful for a positive outcome.”

On 16th December 2023, Glasswells organised a Christmas Jumper Day in honour of the Teenage Cancer Trust Ward and raised a brilliant amount of £105 which Jake presented to the Nurse Specialist on behalf of Glasswells. Throughout the treatment, Jake received copious messages of love and support from his colleagues. A huge goal of his was to get back to work as soon as he could and Glasswells are delighted to confirm his return.

Paul Glasswell, Managing Director, comments: “We are delighted that Jake has been able to reach his goal of returning to work. On behalf of Glasswells, I would like to thank Jake for sharing his remarkable story, demonstrating his bravery throughout his journey with AML and we look forward to seeing the success of this fantastic book, which has been a hit with many of his colleagues, including myself.”

The book is now available to purchase on Jake’s website £1 from every purchase will be split and donated between the Teenage Cancer Trust and DKMS. This will help these critical and essential organisations continue to care for patients with the treatments available.

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