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  1. ITV Report

Fundraising doctor dies at 28 of genetic cancer

Dr Mark Sims with his fiancee Georgie Latcham Credit: Dr Mark Sims/PA Wire

A young doctor, who reached his fundraising target of £100,000 for Cancer Research UK last week, has died of a cancer that runs in his family.

Dr Mark Sims, 28, died on January 19 after battling malignant melanoma caused by a genetic fault, which also affected his brother, father, aunt and grandmother.

He was 15 when first diagnosed with skin cancer but was later given the all clear.

In 2015, the disease returned and spread to his lung, liver, spleen and gall bladder.

Earlier this month Mark, originally from Bristol, was given the news that nothing more could be done to treat him, which spurred him to announce he wanted to raise £100,000 for Cancer Research UK.

He had already raised £20,000 to fund a PhD student for the charity.

Dr Mark Sims with Dr Magnus Dillon, the PhD student he funded

Mark created a blog, Wrestling Melanoma, to document his ordeal and in his final post he spoke of his fiancee, Georgie Latcham, saying "I love you Georgie, I’ll never forget how much you’ve given me…because you’ve given me life."

Georgie delivered the news of his death on the website and described their final hours together: "He was surrounded by all of us, we held his hand and kissed him...Mark had requested 'our song', the song we would have had our first dance to at our wedding."

She added: "Watching my 28-year-old fiance cruelly robbed of his sight, hearing, swallowing, walking, speech, along with any chance of a future was heartbreaking and wrong."

Mark's family have also paid tribute to their "beautiful" son.

Mark was a beautiful person inside and out; he had such a straightforward and selfless approach to life.

We are in awe at the way he turned the negative of a devastating prognosis into a positive of raising awareness of and funds for Cancer Research UK.

– A statement made by Mark's parents