Leukaemia diagnosis for Shepparton boy Travis Lamont, 17, hits his family hard.ESTELLE GRIEPINK July 30, 2014 3:55am
A few months ago, Shepparton teenager Travis Lamont was mostly playing football at Undera or hanging out with his mates.
But that was before a devastating diagnosis of leukaemia.
Now, he is likely to celebrate his 18th birthday 200
Travis’ father David said he first noticed something was wrong when Travis, 17, came home from a day of fishing with a lump on his neck.
Mr Lamont thought it was a mosquito bite, but when Travis began to feel tired and feverish, Mr Lamont took his son to the doctor.
The doctor, noticing something was not right, took some tests and sent them down to Melbourne.
Ten days later, Travis was diagnosed with leukaemia.
Mr Lamont said the news his eldest boy had blood cancer had been distressing for the whole family.
He is a single father to Travis, Steven, 15, and Adam, 14.
‘‘I was pretty upset, it hit me pretty hard,’’ he said.
Within 48 hours of diagnosis, Travis was admitted to The Alfred hospital, to which he must stay close for at least the next year.
Until then, Mr Lamont must split his time between Shepparton and Melbourne.
It has put significant stress on the entire family.
‘‘I stayed down there for the first three weeks and came home on weekends, but I had to go back to work and come back for my two younger sons,’’ he said.
Mr Lamont said it was a struggle to pay the bills when he constantly needed to travel to Melbourne.
But the biggest problem was finding people to stay with Travis, who must have a guardian with him at all times.
‘‘Everyone has been taking time off work and stuff to help me, so I can come to Shepparton and work, but he’s going to be there for such a long time that it’s going to get to a point that I’ll have to do it myself,’’ Mr Lamont said.
‘‘That will put me in a difficult financial position.’’
Mr Lamont said he was thankful for his family, friends and girlfriend for supporting him while he tried to be there for Travis.
He said he would appreciate any support from the community during this traumatic time.
Some of the Shepparton community and Travis’ football team have already rallied around the family by raising money and providing food and fuel vouchers.
Mr Lamont said the family was counting down the days until Travis’ return.
‘‘The last thing we want is for him to be so far away, it would be a lot easier if he could be treated here,’’ he said.
‘‘The house has been pretty quiet without him.’’
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