A SIX-YEAR-OLD girl battling against leukaemia has been granted her biggest wish: to see Take That live thanks to the Chronicle.
Olivia Coombes from Wistaston was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) – cancer of the white blood cells – in April of last year and has been in and out of hospital ever since.
The Berkeley Primary School pupil was introduced to the chart-topping band while receiving treatment after she was given a DVD of their ‘Circus’ tour to keep her occupied.
The young fan, who still has to make regular trips to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, was devastated when her dad Greg was unable to get hold of tickets for one of the group’s tour dates.
But after the Chronicle contacted the band’s promoters, the youngster can now look forward to seeing her idols performing in Manchester along with her dad and mum Kim.
Greg, 31, of Valley Road, said: “Because of how young she is, she obviously has no recollection of Take That from years ago when they split up. She struggled to understand who Robbie was when he returned.
“But she’s had massive pleasure watching their DVD and we often hear her singing away to her made up versions of their songs.
“I’d tried for hours to get tickets for her but had no joy. It’s an absolute dream come true for her and has given her something to focus on.”
Olivia’s condition means that her ‘immature lymphocytes’ – called ‘lymphoblasts’ – over-produce and fill up her bone marrow, stopping it from making blood cells properly.
Because of this, Olivia’s body cannot fight off infections properly.
At the start of her cancer treatment, Olivia contracted a serious viral infection while undergoing chemotherapy and, as a result of being bed-bound for two months, became unsteady on her feet.
Greg added: “She had a fall and sprained her ankle and because of the medicine she was on she had constant feelings of pins and needles as well as sore joints. She ended up in a wheelchair for months.
“Olivia doesn’t really grasp of how serious the cancer is and has just got on with it. We’re really proud of her.
“She never moans about it and takes everything in her stride. She thinks her treatment is normal.
“She’s doing great and is now on maintenance chemotherapy which means she’s given smaller amounts orally at home and some still through a Hickman line in her chest.
“Fortunately we appear to have caught the leukaemia early. She has a good chance of fighting her cancer without a bone marrow transplant.”
“She’s been enjoying time with her sister and they go out every weekend. Olivia has a specially adapted bike donated by the Cyclists Fighting Cancer charity and were kindly put together by Supreme Cycles in Crewe.