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August’s Warrior – Leo

Leo is turning 4 next month, and has already been through more in his short life than most people will ever experience.

At 2 ½, he became unwell and exhibited a number of different symptoms for about 6 weeks. The symptoms themselves didn’t seem overly concerning at the time, but his parents were worried that he wasn’t improving. Eventually an ultrasound showed a tumour in his abdomen. Further testing lead to a diagnosis: stage 4 neuroblastoma.

Leo and his Mum moved in to the Ronald McDonald House to be closer to hospital. Leo had 5 rounds of chemotherapy and then underwent surgery to remove as much of the primary tumour as was safe. This was followed by 2 rounds of megatherapy including stem cell rescue, and then 20 days of radiation.

Sadly the results of scans following his radiotherapy showed that the cancer is still progressing: it is now considered incurable.

Leo has been incredibly brave and adapted to his new lifestyle very well. He takes everything in his stride once it becomes familiar, but he has found it very hard having to stay in Perth away from the rest of his family.

Leo can be very reserved and shy, but then also crazy like any other 3 year old. He barely talks to the hospital staff, even after more than year of treatment, but he is still bright and cheeky with them! He loves his family: his face lights up when they visit and he loves talking to them on the phone.

Leo loves Hot Wheels, superheroes, rainbows, jet skis and motorbikes, aeroplanes and helicopters (anything with an engine really!) and animals. He lives on a farm, so he would love drawings of tractors and farm machinery.

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