THE family of a Stratford-upon-Avon teenager, diagnosed with an extremely rare cancerous tumour, have launched a campaign to raise £10,000, while he is treated at a proton beam therapy centre, in Florida.
Stratford High School pupil, Harry Burton, found a pea-size lump in his neck in September, and in October his parents took him to the GP as it had got significantly bigger.
The 14-year-old, who lives in St Peter’s Way, had hospital scans and tests over Christmas.
He was eventually diagnosed with an extremely rare cancerous tumour, called a mucoepidermoid carcinoma, in his salivary gland, in January.
Following the diagnosis, he had surgery for more than six hours to remove the cancer, in February.
Due to the incredible rarity of the cancer, and the chance it may return in a more aggressive form, his oncologists have referred him to be treated at a Proton beam therapy centre, in Jacksonville, Florida, as the treatment is currently not available in the UK.
His eldest sister Laura Smith said: “Harry’s case has been agreed for full NHS funding for treatment, flights for Harry and his parents, and accommodation.
“This is fantastic news, but Harry’s family will need support to meet the daily living costs for almost three months of treatment in the USA, and also to help support Harry’s family here in the UK.”
Laura, who works at Stratford Tourist Information Centre, continued: “At the moment we are desperately trying to fundraise with various activities to help Harry and his family, and to ensure that the family can concentrate on getting Harry well again, and free from cancer.”
The family will be flown out to Jacksonville, in Florida, on Friday 27th May, to commence nine-weeks of treatment at the Florida proton centre.
So far, more than £4,000 has been raised. A cake sale is being held at Stratford Tourist Information Centre, tomorrow (Saturday 21st May), between 10am and 3pm.
A disco and buffet will also be held at Stratford Rugby Club, tomorrow (Saturday), from 7pm until 11pm.
Tickets cost £10 for adults, £5 for children aged under 12, and free entry for children under five-years-old.
To reserve tickets call or text Dianne on 07907 050883. After reserving tickets, they can then be paid for and collected at the tourist information centre.
A small number of tickets may also be available on the door at the rugby club on the night.
To make a donation visit https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/SupportHarry
For the full article see the Herald on Thursday 26th May.