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Donations pour in for Dorchester teen, 14, diagnosed with leukaemia
KIND-HEARTED donations have been pouring in for a 14-year-old Dorchester boy diagnosed with leukaemia.
Rian Harvey, pictured right, a Thomas Hardye School student, is undergoing chemotherapy at Southampton General Hospital.
The popular pupil was diagnosed two weeks ago and is expected to receive the treatment until January.
In little more than a week, almost £2,000 has been raised for the Help a Friend’s campaign for Rian.
His mum Sarah George said she is ‘overwhelmed’ by the support.
She said: “People have been so kind. It’s been absolutely overwhelming, the messages of support and donations. Cancer is horrible, whichever type it is.
“But we are so lucky to have the services we do. The unit in Southampton has been amazing, as was Dorset County Hospital’s Kingfisher ward.
“So far there’s been quite a positive outcome from the treatment, his blood seems okay. We have just got to take each day as it comes.”
She described Rian as a ‘fun-loving, talkative, lovely boy’ with lots of friends. Sarah said the family initially thought Rian had a hamstring injury, but it was getting worse and worse.
She added: “All through the summer I wasn’t really happy with him. He was quite lethargic, but as he’s a teenager I put it down to growing up.”
Rian had an X-ray but Sarah then took him to A&E two weeks ago where he was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia .
Sarah added: “As every parent can imagine, this is the worst nightmare.”
She said Rian has up and down days, but when he is feeling okay he likes having a laugh with the nurses looking after him.
“I’m grateful that he is older than some other children on the ward and I’m able to explain to him what is going on.”
Acute myeloid leukaemia is a cancer of the white blood cells.
The process for making new white blood cells gets out of control and immature blood cells continue to be made, which build up in the bone marrow until there is no room for it to make healthy white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets.
Sarah said she hopes that Rian’s diagnosis will also help raise awareness of the disease.
So far, nearly £2,000 has been donated for Rian with a number of events planned in the coming weeks.
PLENTY OF WAYS TO HELP
THERE will be an auction of promises and a music event at Kingston Country Courtyard on November 16 in aid of Rian.
Check the Facebook page by searching ‘Helping Rian- justgiving.com/helpingrian Damers First School will be donating the profit from its school disco later this month to the cause.
Fundraising events are also planned at Dorchester Middle School and Thomas Hardye School.
n To donate visit justgiving. com/helpingrian You can also text RIAN50 £1 or more to 70070 If you would like to do something to help you can also contact Samantha Harman at the Echo office in Dorchester on 01305 263465.
SYMPTONS TO LOOK OUT FOR
- Looking paler than usual and feeling tired – because of too few red blood cells (anaemia).
- Bruises – you may bruise more easily and it could take longer for bleeding to stop, if you have less blood clotting cells (platelets) than normal.
- Infections – because there are too few mature white blood cells to fight infection.
- Aches and pains in your bones.
- Swollen glands (lymph nodes) in your neck, under your arm or in your groin.
- Feeling unwell and run down.
- Fever and sweats – you may have a high temperature without any obvious cause, such as an infection.
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