LEUKAEMIA left little Ace Manthey so weak he could hardly walk or talk and he spent weeks lying in his bed.
The seven-year-old Abingdon schoolboy was first diagnosed when he was three and needed three and a half years of chemotherapy, which was completed last year.
Now his mother Tomomi Manthey, 36, and his sister Sky, 10, are having their hair cut to raise funds for a charity which uses hair donations — and funding — to create wigs for children with cancer.
Mum-of-four Mrs Manthey, of John Jones Close, said: “Ace was only three when he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia.
“Following all the support we received over the years, we wanted to give something back so decided to raise funds for the Little Princess Trust.
“When Ace first went on to his ward, all we saw was children with bald heads.
“This was heartbreaking for us as we knew he was going to become one of them.
“He lost his hair completely for the first year but luckily it grew back. Ace is now seven and we hope he will now be able to live a normal life.
“When you go on to a cancer ward it is something that jumps out at you — the number of kids going through this.
“Losing your hair is a huge thing for both the child and the parents.
“We are very fortunate our son made it through his treatment and, because of this, we feel we should do fundraising for other families.”
Mrs Manthey and her husband Ian, who also have two other children, Summer, five, and Hope, two, have set a target of raising £500 for the charity through a sponsored hair cut on November 2 with hairdresser Helen Gardiner.
Mrs Manthey said: “I can donate about nine inches of my hair and Sky is planning to donate about 15 inches.
“Sky has always had long hair so it’s a bit of a sacrifice for her, but she knows it will make a big difference to another child.
Sky said: “I wanted to do something to help after seeing Ace’s treatment.”
Mr Manthey, 40, a supermarket sales rep, said: “This is a really good cause — it might be even tougher for girls when they lose their hair.”
Monica Glass, charity manager for the Little Princess Trust, said: “We can’t guarantee particular hair donations will be used, but in return for donations wig manufacturers provide a number of wigs free of charge for children.
“We really appreciate the sacrifice Sky and her mum are making and the funds they are raising.”
- To make a donation, visit justgiving.com/ian-manthey