Brave Wheathampstead boy gets the all clear

PUBLISHED: 14:59 30 September 2011

Freddie Crowder of Wheathampstead, reaches target for treatment costs. Freddie with his sister Aggie.

Freddie Crowder of Wheathampstead, reaches target for treatment costs. Freddie with his sister Aggie.

Archant

THE REMARKABLE journey of nine-year-old Freddie Rowe-Crowder’s courageous battle to overcome an aggressive cancer and then move into remission took another step forward this month, when his latest set of scans gave him the all clear.

Returning from a weekend away at Family Camp with First Wheathampstead Cubs and Scouts, of which Freddie is a proud member of Mead Pack, the youngster was given the good news from doctors that his health continues to improve.

On September 19, Freddie had his first post-treatment check up and both the ultra sound and X-rays came back clear. A decision was then taken by his Great Ormond Street Consultant to remove Freddie’s port, a device inside his chest which makes it easy to administer chemotherapy drugs.

Tep said: “Consultants only make this decision when they do not believe any further treatment will be required. We feel elated by this news.

“It’s a huge step for Freddie’s remission. It’s an enormous milestone that, when readers of the Herts Advertiser and the local community began to raise funds 18 months ago, we could only hope and pray for.

“Those prayers have been answered dramatically – miraculously.”

He added: “As always, you, your readers and the community have our eternal gratitude for your selfless work in praying for Fred and raising the funds needed to save his life.”

Just two years ago, the St Helen’s school pupil was given a matter of weeks to live after chemotherapy, transplants and a major operation failed to prove a cure for the advanced neuroblastoma which had spread throughout his body and into his bones.

But inspirational Freddie battled through until Christmas when his family discovered a pioneering new treatment in Germany, offering them all a glimmer of hope.

He was considered to be an ideal candidate for a new antibody treatment but it came with a huge price tag of £60,000. With no available NHS funding, his family, friends and school took on the seemingly insurmountable task of raising the amount.

The Herts Advertiser launched a campaign to support the fundraising efforts and within weeks the entire total was reached.

Freddie underwent five rounds of the gruelling and painful ground-breaking treatment over an eight month period with a grace that astounded all around him.

At times the treatment left him extremely ill but the results speak for themselves, as Freddie’s most recent scans prove.

His father said their recent weekend away had been the stuff of dreams as their healthy nine-year-old conquered a climbing wall, abseiled and played.

He said: “To see him running and playing non-stop throughout the weekend was absolutely amazing.”

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