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‘Bucket list’ wishes flood in for Blaise Etheridge-Clarke
THE parents of a little boy who started a “bucket list” for their son after being told he has months to live have been overwhelmed by the public response.
Blaise Etheridge-Clarke, of Rawcliffe , York, who celebrated his sixth birthday on Saturday, has undergone surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy for tumours on his brain and spine, but doctors have told the family there is nothing more they can do to help him.
Since receiving the prognosis in early August, his parents, Theresa and Tony, have been working to grant Blaise as many of his wishes as possible and to create special memories for his brothers, Christian, seven, and Zach and Jerome, both three.
After their plans were reported in The Press last month, they have received numerous invitations and gifts from well-wishers, including a trip to Lego Land from Superbreak in York, a trip to Old Trafford, a day go-karting at Monks Cross and a day in a classic car.
On Friday, Blaise and his brothers were invited to RAF Linton-on-Ouse, where they went on a flight simulator, sat in planes and were given a guided tour.
Theresa said she was moved by the kind gestures, especially after local people raised money for Blaise to go to Disneyland after he was diagnosed with the illness.
She said: “We had so much fundraising in 2010 and we would not have got to Disney without those people. I kind of thought people would have done enough. “We didn’t expect all the replies we have had. Thank you never seems enough when people want to put themselves out for nothing in return, just for the goodness of their heart.
“We want to make every single minute special for Blaise and that’s what we are trying to do.”
Other offers have been gifts of guinea pigs, a scooter and a cheque for a trip to the beach, as Blaise asked for on his list.
The St Wilfrid’s RC Primary School pupil has had brain and spine operations as well as 16 months of chemotherapy and spells of radiotherapy.
Theresa, a nurse at St James’s Hospital in Leeds, has no idea when Blaise’s condition will start to deteriorate but said the family was keen to complete as many things as possible.
Other things Blaise has asked for on his bucket list – a list of things to do before you pass away – includes the chance to meet Nintendo characters Mario and Luigi, and for a Wii console and toys including a Spiderman costume and web shooter and a karaoke machine.
Blaise, who was The Press Community Pride Awards Child Of The Year in 2010, also has hopes of going to Disneyland one last time.
If any businesses or individuals are able to help with Blaise’s list, they can email Theresa at email@example.com