Numurkah boy Samuel Altoft may only be 16 months old, but he's already engaged in a life and death struggle against a rare and aggressive form of cancer.JENNA BISHOP December 13, 2012 4:40am
Numurkah’s Samuel Altoft may only be 16 months old, but he’s already had to face more devastating news than most people will in their entire lives.
Just a couple of weeks after his first birthday on August 22, Samuel was diagnosed with anaplastic ependymoma, a rare and aggressive form of cancer which causes tumours in the brain or on the spinal cord.
A week later, Samuel had an operation to remove a large tumour from the back of his brain.
The community is being urged to support Samuel’s fight at a Dining with the Stars fundraising dinner on February 2.
The night will feature a two-course meal with stars Brendan Fevola, Anthony Stevens, Chris Connolly, Dean Pullar, Debbie Lee, Jessica Rothwell, Neville Bruns and Sarah Wall.
Guests also have the opportunity to buy 10 premium tickets, which includes a limousine ride from Numurkah to a secret location for pre-dinner drinks, and then a limo ride with the stars to the event.
Sporting memorabilia, including a cricket bat signed by the entire Australian team, will be auctioned off, along with holidays to Queensland and Torquay, hampers and services.
Samuel’s aunt Tracey Altoft said surgeons were able to remove most of the tumour during the operation, and he has just finished his second round of chemotherapy.
‘‘At his age, chemo isn’t going to cure him, it’s only going to keep it at bay until he’s old enough for radiotherapy,’’ she said.
Samuel will be able to have radiotherapy at age three, but until then his treatment will be determined by three-monthly MRIs.
Samuel’s mother Tania Altoft said he had regained a lot of his strength, energy and his love for musical toys and trucks since returning home to Numurkah on Sunday.
‘‘He’s a good little dancer — well, he thinks he is anyway,’’ she said.
Funds raised from the dinner will go towards Samuel’s treatment costs, travel and rehabilitation, and Miss Altoft said it meant a lot to have such support for Samuel.
‘‘It makes a really big difference to just know we’ve got that support,’’ she said.
‘‘His journey is my journey .
The Better Local Government Association has applauded Greater Shepparton City Council’s decision not to apply for an increase on the 2.5 per cent rate cap set by the Victorian Government.
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Tatura’s rainfall for the last three months of 2015, 116.6mm, was marginally down on the long-term average for the same period, 120.8mm.
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Special supplement in this weeks edition
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The NSW Government has recommended the Old Cobram Barooga Bridge be placed on the State Heritage register.
Deniliquin doctor Marion Magee says she is disgusted with the treatment of local nurses.
Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone has been criticised by two Victorian MPs for suggesting the Federal Government should stop spending money on the $2 billion irrigation modernisation program until problems are sorted out.
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