The loving family of a Paisley mum struck down by the human form of mad cow disease will pay tribute to her – with a sing-song.
Karaoke fan Janice Shankland, 54, became seriously ill in October last year and passed away in January after contracting Creutzfeldt–Jakob Disease.
Now the family intend to honour the popular mum with a special karaoke night in aid of ACCORD Hospice, which cared for her.
CJD is extremely rare and Janice’s daughter Bobbie O’Donnell, from Linwood, said: “About one in a million people get CJD. My mum got ill in October and it progressed so fast that the died on January 2.
“Initially, she was a wee bit dittery. Her motor functions started to deteriorate and she would do things like stop in mid-sentence and forget what she was saying.
“She also started to forget family phone numbers that she had known for years.
“Things got worse and the doctors thought she’d had a stroke.”
At this stage, Janice was taken into the Royal Alexandra Hospital, in Paisley, for tests and then transferred to the Southern General Hospital, in Glasgow.
A stroke, brain tumour and neurological conditions were all ruled out before experts came to the decision that CJD was attacking Janice’s system.
Bobbie, 33, said: “CJD attacks your brain.
“ It is more or less the same as mad cow disease, but you don’t get it from meat. The doctors don’t actually know how people get it.
“Experts from the University of Edinburgh even came to investigate and looked into my mum’s whole life. “
Well-known Janice, originally from Paisley’s West End, worked as a domestic in hospitals and lived in Renfrew.
Bobbie, who is married to Chris and is mum to one-year-old Dylan, described her as “a great woman who was great fun and was always up for a laugh”.
Now Janice – who was married to Thomas, 59, and was also mum to Debbie, 31, and 27-year-old Thomas – will be remembered at a fancy dress party night in the Gleniffer Hotel, Paisley, on Friday. All money raised will go to ACCORD Hospice, in Paisley. Bobbie said: “She was in the Southern General for the bulk of the time and then we mover her to ACCORD Hospice before Christmas.
“At that point, we thought she might not make it until Christmas.
“The staff at ACCORD were superb in the way they cared for my mum. They gave her excellent care and far surpassed any expectations I had. They really looked after my dad too.
“My mum was the kind of person that people didn’t forget, so we have organised a karaoke night to raise money for ACCORD.
“She loved karaoke and would get up to sing although she was rotten. Her favourite song was Nilsson’s Without You.”
Tickets for the ACCORD fundraiser cost £5 at the door on the night, or by calling Bobbie on 07972 019694.
The fun kicks off at 7.30pm, fancy dress is optional and there will be a DJ, a buffet and raffles.