A mystery donor has given $130,000 to a four-year-old boy with cancer to help him get treatment in the US that could save his life.
Lukemia patient Zac Oliver’s parents reached their £500,000 treatment target last night after a mystery donor read Zac Oliver’s story online and made a £131,000 donation.
Though the man requested that his identity be kept anonymous, he contributed the final $131,000 necessary to fly the boy to America for his treatment.
In May, Zac Oliver was diagnosed with a very rare form of leukemia. He is the only person with the condition in the United Kingdom and just one of six in the world.
The treatment has recently been licensed for use in the United Kingdom, but strict medical criteria means Zac Oliver is not eligible.
Zac’s family Mark Garbett and Hannah Oliver can now afford to fly him to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for its 17-week CAR T-cell therapy which will give Zac a 60-80 percent chance of survival, as opposed to less than 25 percent if he continues with chemotherapy in the UK.
Though he has been undergoing treatment in Telford, England, the chemotherapy sessions only guarantee him less than 25% chance of survival.
Hannah said she received a phone call out of the blue telling her “not to worry” and to “pack her bags”, reassuring her it was not a hoax. Hours later, the money appeared in their bank account.
“It takes a very special type of person to do that”, she told the Daily Mail.
“They have given us a massive gift – the gift of life for Zac, hopefully. But so did everybody else who helped us.”
“Words just aren’t enough for us to express how much we appreciate everyone’s help, the support the donor is offering, and the publicity given by the Daily Mail.”
The family aims to fly to America next month after Zac finishes one more week of chemotherapy.
“It’s really exciting to know the end is in sight,” Hannah said.
“It means there’s a chance Zac could be cured for Christmas.”
Mrs Oliver-Willets and Mr Garbett said any money left over from their appeal following Zac’s treatment in America will be redistributed to help other sick children.