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Fundraising campaign for Evan Westfold, 4, who has cancer

By Sam Lennon

A race against time is on to save a young boy from cancer.

And the fundraising organisation for the late Kelly Turner has agreed to help towards for the £50,000 needed for four-year-old Evan Westfold's treatment in Germany.

The specialist radiotherapy began this week but the entire sum has to be raised by next week.

Evan in hospital
Evan in hospital

Kelly’s father Martin told the East Kent Mercury: “It is urgent to help save this little lad. We know that Kelly would have wanted us to help Evan.

"When she was being treated at the Royal Marsden Hospital she saw a toddler with feeding tubes and she said 'at least I got to 17'."

The £600,000-plus raised for her treatment in her lifetime is ring-fenced, now covered by probate, which means it can only go for its purpose of research into chemotherapy for her condition, desmoplastic small round cell tumours.

But John Ashman, one of the trustees of the Kelly Turner Foundation, raised almost £10,000 separately early this week and got the group’s blessing to use that sum to help Evan.

By yesterday (Thursday) £37,351 was raised for the boy, who lives in Elvington.

Evan, who just started in the reception class at Sibertswold Primary School in Shepherdswell, was originally taken ill in October and that month had life saving surgery to release a build-up of cerebral fluid.

Evan Westfold, four, was diagnosed with cancer in October 2017
Evan Westfold, four, was diagnosed with cancer in October 2017

But he was then diagnosed as having melludoblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer.

Specialist proton radiotherapy was needed but Evan’s parents, Rory and Luibov, were told that the NHS does not refer this type of cancer for proton therapy because it is aggressive and the treatment isn’t even available in the UK.

The Westfolds found a proton centre in Essen and the family flew out for the start of six weeks of treatment for Evan.

A £10,000 deposit has already been paid but the total sum of £50,000 has to be raised by Friday, December 8.

Mr Westfold said: “This is a lot of money that we just don’t have. If they don’t have the money Evan may be denied treatment.

"Please help our son... he is just four-years-old and wants to live and play like all other children" - Rory Westfold

"Please help our son. He is just four-years-old and wants to live and play like all other children.

"This is just the first step of the battle. We know we have chemotherapy to come. Evan has been amazingly brave.”

The sum does not include the family’s living costs while out in Germany and there is a separate campaign for funds and manpower to renovate the family home so it is suitable for his lasting disability.

The Mercury reported earlier this month that the project had been interrupted by Evan’s illness.

It must be in condition for him to return home in early January. The Westfolds also have a daughter, Mila, three.

You can follow Evan's progress on his Facebook page Evan Lifesaving Appeal.

  • Donations can also be made in person at the Co-operative store in Shepherdswell or online viahttp://bit.ly/2ioYI4O

John Ashman has raised funds the hard way.

In January he slept rough for seven nights in freezing conditions, in September he put himself up as a human dartboard and last Saturday night he had his left calf branded with the letter K in Kelly’s memory.

Mr Ashman said these endurance efforts are called Jackass-style challenges.

While he us principally working for the Kelly Turner Foundation he has also taken on the extra duty of helping Evan and using the money for that through his own fundraising page.

Mr Ashman, who is a site manager now living in Woking, said on Facebook: “Evan is a Dover lad who needs help.

John Ashman
John Ashman

"So we think that the money raised on my JustGiving page should go to getting this lad over to Germany for the treatment he desperately needs.”

Kelly needed £1 million for specialist treatment in America for her extremely rare form of cancer.

And more than half that sum was raised after a 17-month campaign.

The 17-year-old could not be saved in time and died at the Royal Marsden Hospital in south London on November 6.

You can help Mr Ashman’s cause through his JustGiving page

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