‘They will be friends forever’: Boy, 9, raises over £30,000 for hospital where best pal, 10, is being treated for leukaemia by running 2km every day until Christmas
- Freddie Xavi, 9, Lancashire, is running 100km before Christmas to raise money
- Schoolboy has raised £31,969 so far for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital
- His best friend Hughie Higginson, ten, is being treated at RMCH for leukaemia
A ten-year-old boy battling leukaemia has called his best friend ‘amazing’ after committing to running 100km before Christmas to raise money for the hospital he’s being treated in.
Freddie Xavi, nine, from Lancashire has so far raised over £30,000 for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital where Hughie Higginson is undergoing treatment after being diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in September.
The schoolboy began running 2km a day to raise cash for the hospital in November, and has smashed his initial fundraising target of £1,000.
Appearing on This Morning today, Hughie hailed his best pal as ‘amazing’ and said he ‘couldn’t thank him any more’, while Freddie told how he wanted to support his friend who is currently undergoing chemotherapy.
Freddie Xavi (left) , nine, from Lancashire has so far raised over £30,000 for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital where best friend Hughie Higginson (right) is undergoing treatment
Ten-year-old Hughie is undergoing treatment after being diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in September
‘I did 2K junior park runs quite often on Sunday mornings,’ said Freddie. ‘So when I found out it was about 50 days till Christmas, I thought it would be quite a good target to finish on. So 100KM would be a good challenge.’
When asked about hearing about Freddie’s fundraising mission, Hughie said: ‘It was amazing really, he’s just such an influence to other people and he’s just so amazing and I couldn’t thank him any more.’
He is currently undergoing difficult chemotherapy, and when asked how he’s coping went on: ‘Its fine, because you know it’s going to make you better and do a lot in your life, so it’s good yeah.’
Appearing on This Morning today with Freddie’s mum Sarah (left) and Hughie’s dad Kieran (right) , Hughie told hailed his best pal ‘amazing’ and said he ‘couldn’t thank him anymore’
WHAT IS ACUTE LYMPHOBLASTIC LEUKAEMIA?
Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) is a type of blood cancer that starts from young white blood cells in the bone marrow.
There are around 810 new cases in the UK every year. Anyone can develop ALL, however, it mainly affects younger people.
Many ALL symptoms are vague and flu-like, such as:
- General weakness
- Frequent infections
- Bruising or bleeding easily, including nosebleeds, heavy periods and blood in the urine or faeces
- Unexplained weight loss
- Bone or joint pain
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Feeling full
- Paler skin than normal
Research suggests being breastfed and exposed to childhood infections may reduce a person’s risk.
The main ALL treatment is chemotherapy. Patients may also have radiotherapy, steroids or bone marrow transplants.
Source: Cancer Research UK
Freddie’s mum Sarah praised Hughie for his resilience, and told that her son had simply wanted to do something to ‘support’ his best friend.
She said: ‘It goes without saying, [i’m] so proud of him and Hughie as well.
‘Every time we see him he has the biggest smile, they’re both incredible boys and they support each other.
‘Like Freddie said, he just wanted to do something to support Hughie.’
Hughie’s dad Kieran hailed his son a ‘star’ and said he’s been ‘blown away’ with how well he’s coped with his leukaemia battle.
‘He’s just such a little star’, he said, ‘Everything thrown his way so far, he’s just got on with it.
‘Anyone faced with anything like this – it blows me away, every time he has to do something and he just gets on with it’.
He went on: ‘I think going forward Hughie’s health is the biggest Christmas present we could have, the consultants and nurses and support staff are just amazing and are working towards that.
‘We just can’t thank them enough and one day this will all be behind us and we can crack on with our lives.’
Viewers quickly took to Twitter to praise the pair, with one calling it ‘undoubtedly one of the nicest stories’ while another hailed them ‘lovely boys’ who will be ‘friends forever’.
Hughie’s dad Kieran hailed his son a ‘star’ and said he’s been ‘blown away’ with how well he’s coped with his leukaemia battle
Freddie’s mum Sarah praised Hughie for his resilience, and told that her son had simply wanted to do something to ‘support’ his best friend
Viewers quickly took to Twitter to praise the pair, with one calling it ‘undoubtedly one of the nicest stories’ while another hailed them ‘lovely boys’ who will be ‘friends forever’
‘Aww great little lads. Get well soon Hughie!’, wrote one.
One wrote: ‘This is undoubtedly one of the nicest stories at the moment. Freddie and Hugh have such a great friendship and the amount of money raised will offer so much hope in the hospital. Inspirational stuff and great interview from Ruth and Eamon’.
A third commented: ‘Hughie and Freddie are both such lovely boys. They’re going to be friends forever.’
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