10:05AM, Thursday 05 July 2018
A young boy who has been fighting a rare form of cancer is set to go to America for pioneering treatment after £250,000 was raised by his family and supporters.
Reuben Virdee, four, from Furze Platt, will travel to New York in as little as a week to receive vaccination treatment against neuroblastoma, a rare childhood cancer of the nervous system.
Reuben’s mother Jess thanked the Maidenhead public and media for their ‘overwhelming’ support and help to raise the money they needed to pay for the treatment.
She said: “It’s just lovely the amount of support we have had from the community; it was overwhelming.
“None of it has gone unnoticed.
“I wish I could go around and take everyone to the pub.”
Reuben will board a plane to New York with Jess, his dad Kulwant and his little brother Hari after it was confirmed last week that he was cancer free.
Neuroblastoma has an 80 per cent relapse rate and the experimental treatment he will receive is intended to vaccinate him against the cancer’s return.
Reuben will be in New York for three-and-a-half weeks for the initial treatment and will return another four times in the next year.
His mother said that, while he is not quite old enough to understand the significance of the trip, her son is excited about it.
She said: “We have spoken to him about going to New York, and going on a big adventure to where Peter Parker and Spider-Man are from.”
Jess admitted that, while the news is positive, she has been doing her best to stay grounded.
She said: “It still feels really surreal. When you have a child with cancer there’s a part of you that doesn’t want to celebrate that much because you are waiting for the next piece of bad news.
“We have tried to celebrate the wins as they come, even if they are small wins, like not going to the hospital for a weekend.
“There’s always the worry in the back of your mind but the wins have been getting bigger and this is the biggest.”
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