- The final list of signatures will be forwarded to the local government.
- United Kingdom
Olivia Downie was a 7 year old girl from Aberdeenshire, Scotland. In January 2009, Olivia started complaining of severe backaches and tiredness, she looked very puffy and lethargic, she screamed in sheer agony for weeks and weeks.
We phoned NHS 24, paid numerous visits to the GP and outpatients department. Then we took Olivia to Royal Aberdeen Children's Hospital. They diagnosed cancer within 24 hours and then went onto diagnose Neuroblastoma Stage 4. We were shocked and horrified to the core, devastated..... how could our sweet innocent child have cancer??!
Doctors started Olivia on chemotherapy straight away to shrink the main tumour on her left adrenal gland. The treatments had horrible side effects, such as losing her beautiful blonde hair, violent sickness, loss of appetite, made her tired, confused and angry and gave her gastrionomitus. After chemotherapy, they operated to remove the tumour, which was the size of a grapefruit. Olivia had more chemotherapy to try to rid the bone marrow disease, and then high dose chemo, the hardest of all chemotherapies. Olivia remained unconscious over her 5th birthday on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day 2009. It was heartbreaking and soul destroying to watch our precious little girl go through all of this.
Her dad and I just wanted to take her pain and suffering away, do anything to stop it, but there was nothing we could do, except be there for her. Olivia then had radiotherapy and was sent home for a short break.
Through months of research, we discovered Immunotherapy, a new trial drug available to stop Neuroblastoma in its tracks. The survival rate for Neuroblastoma stands at a terrifying 20%. Unfortunately, Olivia was not eligible for the UK trial. With the help of Olivia's consultant, our local MP and sheer persistence, we got the ok to take Olivia to Germany for Immunotherapy. The local community came together through different fundraising ideas and raised money to help send Olivia for 6 cycles of treatment. All seemed well, until scans performed at Olivia's 4th cycle discovered 2 new tumours. This was a huge setback for Olivia.
Olivia's disease was stubborn, and although the treatment in Germany clearly helped Olivia, it progressed in other areas of her body. We were running out of options and our last real hope for a cure lay in Sono Photo Dynamic Therapy. Olivia was accepted onto a course of treatment at a clinic in Mexico, that has years of experience of helping children with Neuroblastoma, including UK children, but they didn't have enough funds to cover the costs. Olivia's disease has been stubborn, and although the treatment in Germany clearly helped Olivia, it has progressed in other areas of her body. Olivia arrived safely in Mexico after a difficult flight. Treatment began as soon as possible. Sadly Olivia took a turn for the worse early on in treatment and was transferred to a hospital near by. Olivia was now dying and we had to bring her home. Olivia managed to get back to a hospital in Scotland where she passed away peacefully.
While everyone was frantically raising money for treatment to save this little girls life. One woman decided to steal from the cause. She collected hundreds of pounds from Fraserburgh and surrounding areas telling them that she was doing a sponsored walk for Olivia's appeal. She never handed the money over or paid it into Olivia's Appeal.
Olivia's family wanted to press charges, they wanted the money paid into Logans Fund (a charity that helped Olivia) and this woman to be sentenced for theft and fraud. So the case was to be taken up in court until without reason the case was dropped with no charges pressed. This woman hasn't even been given a warning, she has been allowed to walk free and enjoy this money she stole from a dying child.
We need as many people as possible to stand up against this and say we want her taken to court and charged. The courts are sending out a message that its okay to steal from charities as this woman has not been made an example of.