TO LOOK at two-year-old William Hunt running around his East Dean home it’s hard to imagine that this time last year he was struck down by an extremely rare illness.
The toddler was just 20 months old when he was taken ill with a form of haemolytic anaemia so rare it is the fourth recorded children’s case worldwide.
Now his dad Simon has signed up for this year’s London Marathon to raise thousands of pounds for the hospital that helped care for his son.
The 35-year-old’s aim is to get enough money to fund a new platelet incubator and agitator for the blood transfusion laboratory at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH).
He lives with his wife Roamy, William and their 11-month-old son Thomas.
The parent’s nightmare began when William was taken to the doctor’s in February last year believing he was a bit under the weather but within hours they were waiting for a blood transfusion. The next day they were told that it was unlikely William would pull through but thanks to numerous tests, blood transfusions, high steroid medication and a course of immunotherapy the plucky youngster is now on the mend.
Roamy said, “With William being treated at GOSH we wanted to do something. They have been amazing, if it wasn’t for them William wouldn’t be running around like he is now.
“We were told in November that he was in remission.
“There is more chance of winning the lottery than having what he had.”
The parents had already asked friends and family to donate to GOSH rather than buy presents when William had his birthday but wanted to boost funds further and now Simon is busy training for the mammoth feat in April.
He hopes to raise more than £6,000 to buy the equipment for GOSH.
Roamy added, “He’s quietly confident and is just getting on with it really and doing the training because we feel after all that William’s gone through this is nothing compared to what he suffered.
“You feel helpless when your children are ill and it’s nice to do something. It feels like it’s something positive to come out of it.”
Anyone who would like to sponsor Simon can visit: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/sponsorsimon