Belfast Telegraph

Family asks for support to battle daughter's rare childhood cancer

By Mark Bain

The Co Armagh family of a three-year-old girl battling a rare and aggressive childhood cancer are asking for support for a major fundraising drive.

The Treanor family hope that their fun-loving toddler, called Ellen, can take part in US-based clinical trials which could stop the deadly disease from returning.

And tonight the family hopes as many people as possible can come out and support them in a special 'Walk With You' family event at Bessbrook from 6pm.

Ellen, who is from Bessbrook, was diagnosed with Stage 4 high-risk neuroblastoma in January this year and has undergone gruelling treatment over the last six months, including eight cycles of high dose chemotherapy, a 13 hour surgery to remove the tumour in her stomach and a stem cell transplant.

The next step is radiotherapy followed by six months of antibody treatment.

"If all the remaining treatment goes to plan this will have taken up 15 months of her short life so far," mum Claire said.

"It's a particularly aggressive cancer with a low survival rate if it returns. Only around 40% of children with the disease are still alive five years after first diagnosis.

"Our hope is that we can get Ellen into remission by the end of her frontline treatment.

"There are two clinical trials, both in America, which both aim to stop the disease from returning.

"We would love the support of businesses, schools, sports clubs, and families from all over Northern Ireland."

The entry fee for tonight's family walk will be £5 per person or £10 per family, with registration at Bessbrook Town Hall at 5pm.

Follow the tot's story through the 'Ellen's Journey' Facebook page.

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