Our History

Monty’s Corner was set up by the parents of Melanie Kogelbauer, who was diagnosed with Leukaemia (AML) on 10 September 2004 and passed away on 10 July 2007.

Read the story from Melanie’s mother how Monty’s Corner came to life:


“The time I lost my precious Melanie I lost meaning in my life. Why are we here? Where are we going? Why shall I get up in the morning and go to work again? Why should I be nice? Why should I care for others? Why did it have to be Melanie or any other child? Why? Why? Why?”

 

photo of Melanie During the times when Melanie (pictured left) had to stay in the hospital(s) and slept long hours because she was poorly I used to grab a doctor or a consultant to discuss cancer and the causes of it. My brain was busy with questions pretty much all the time. I was frantically searching through everything I have done in my life that might have led to Leukaemia. My husband (an academic) and I (a former-academic) came up with theories of our own and discussed them with the doctors. But, to no avail. We had more questions at the end than we had when we started. After a while, we gave up and said “unfortunately, it was only bad luck”.

After we lost Melanie, I personally tried hard to stay away from anything related to cancer. I did not want to see anybody with cancer nor want to talk or hear about it.

One day my husband asked me whether there had been anybody collecting any information related to Melanie for research purposes. I said “no”. This conversation triggered all the “why” questions again in my mind. Even though I tried hard to stay away from cancer my curiosity was pulling me into it. I started asking how this type of research worked, what it involved and what we know so far. I could not be satisfied with the “bad luck” statement anymore and I needed to know more for my own sanity.

After three months of going through scientific publications on the subject it has become obvious that we indeed know too little. More work needs to be carried out. Moreover, it is apparent that research on the causes of childhood cancers needed to be addressed at a global level. This is because the research carried out so far has not included an adequate number of patients, hence resulted inconclusive or contradictory results.

This is when I decided to form Monty’s Corner to reach out to patients and their parents around the world, to share knowledge and experiences to be able to help the scientific researchers so that they can in turn help “other” children who hopefully will never experience such a dreadful situation in their lives.

This is the new definition of "meaning of life" for me - helping others...

Meltem Ocal-Kogelbauer
Melanie's mother
Founder and voluntary CEO of CCE Research Alliance
Creator of Monty's Corner
Full time IT Business Consultant, living and working in London

Read Meltem's blogs here

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