Wee Oscar's family 'battling on'

Published Wednesday, 31 October 2012
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The dad of Oscar Knox, the wee Belfast boy battling a rare form of cancer, has spoken to UTV about the heartache of watching his son suffer the set-back that saw him return from the US without life-saving treatment.

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Wee Oscar and his family had been prepared to spend at least six months in Philadelphia, so that the four-year old could undergo immunotherapy which could stop his neuroblastoma recurring.

"He's probably been in hospital more than he's been out of it for the last year. It's been really, really tough on him," his dad Stephen told U105's Frank Mitchell on Wednesday.

"It's been tough on the whole family, I suppose. It splits us all up because we're rarely under the one roof, which is hard going."

But the Knox family's plans were thrown into chaos when, on arriving in America, Oscar quickly became very ill and was found to also be suffering from a rare heart and lung problem.

His parents were told by doctors to be prepared for the worst.

If the worst should happen ... we have to know that we did our best for him.

Stephen Knox

While little Oscar fought back, immunotherapy was no longer even an option and the family were forced to return home. But the medical bills had already soared to around £400,000.

"It's going to blow all that money raised out of the water. It's going to be us back to square one," Stephen said.

Wee Oscar has become something of a celebrity in his own right, with thousands of people following his story on Twitter and Facebook.

Over £250,000 was raised for the little lad in just 100 days, by well-wishers hoping to get him the treatment he so desperately needed.

But now the family have to wait and see how Oscar's heart and condition progresses before they can decide what to do next.

Having endured the agony of watching their son deteriorate while in America, his parents now have to rally themselves for another fund-raising effort.

"It's very, very tough. It's just turned our lives upside down, but there's nothing else for it - you just have to get on with it," Stephen said.

"Because whatever happens and if the worst should happen - and there's a very real possibility that it might - we have to know that we did our best for him and gave him the best chance."

Oscar's dad added: "The messages of support we get from people all around the world for him, it really does give us good strength and good hope.

"We know there's people all over the world praying for him."

© UTV News
Comments Comments
Sarah in Belfast wrote (534 days ago):
Did the family have insurance for the trip? Poor little lad hes not getting a break at the minute. I hope for the family sake they had insurance to cost these costs as it would be soul destroying to see them in debt. Are their any other fund-raising options to help out?
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