'STAY STRONG': Aiden Jury, 4, is all smiles after receiving a signed picture and drumsticks from Phil Collins
Phil Collins has sent a message of support to a central Victorian boy fighting for his life. Collins posted signed drumsticks and dedicated a photograph to four-year-old Aiden Jury, after learning of his battle with leukaemia.
Aiden comforts himself with Phil Collins music during treatment at the Royal Children’s Hospital, particularly his favourite song In The Air Tonight.
When Collins heard of Aiden’s story through the Bendigo Advertiser, he sent the gifts urging Aiden to “be strong’’ during his cancer fight.
A note from his office read: “We wish Aiden the best of health for the future and hope that these items help and uplift him through his treatment’’.
Aiden was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, a cancer affecting the blood and bone marrow, in August last year. At the time of his diagnosis, Aiden’s leukaemic blasts were at 75 per cent and chemotherapy started straight away. Aiden and his parents moved into Ronald McDonald House for eight weeks and started their cancer journey.
By day 15, Aiden’s blasts were down to 13 per cent, but doctors hoped for 5 per cent. By day 29, he was in remission – but as with all patients, the aim is to induce the patient into remission and then work on killing leukaemic cells and prevent it coming back.
Aiden has since had countless bone marrow tests, lumbar punctures and blood transfusions and his parents have lost count of the number of times he has been under general anaesthetic.
He had his first week-long session of radiaton two weeks ago and starts his maintenance program this week.
That will require lumbar punctures every three months, chemotherapy via syringe each month and daily medication for three to five years.
But yesterday’s gift was just what the doctor ordered as Aiden starts the next leg of his cancer marathon. In fact, he now thinks Phil Collins is even more “awesome’’ than before.
Aiden’s journey has also inspired his sister, Cayla, to take part in Corey’s Cruise for a Cure in July.
The fundraising cruise is a 10,000km motorcycle or car journey across half of Australia. A trivia night will be held on May 26 in Castlemaine, with all proceeds going to the Leukaemia Foundation.
Aiden, centre, with his family, Emma-Lee, Ashleigh, dad Gavin, Cayla, mum Rhonda and Joshua. Picture: Jim AlderseyFor details, visit www.coreyscruise.org
© BendigoAdvertiser, by Nicole Ferrie