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Mountain peak climbed

Filed: Sunday, 20th November 2016
By: Staff Writer

A charity supported by KUMB.com has reached its target after three years of dedicated fundraising.

Heartlink Children's Charity has been raising funds for a new Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) machine to be installed at Glenfield Hospital's Paediatric Intensive Care Unit. The charity came to the attention of KUMB readers after we revealed how the daughter of one of our members suffered a stroke and three heart attacks back in 2013.

The parents of little Willow Page, Iain and Denise were informed that should Willow survive, she would almost certainly be left brain damaged. Thankfully that prognosis proved to be a false alarm and thanks to months of care and dedication from the nursing team at Glenfield's PICU, Willow was finally allowed to return home.

Since Willow was admitted, both Iain and Denise have been heavily involved in fundraising for the Unit. Earlier today, Iain - who posts on the KUMB Forum as debaser_74 - revealed that the charity had finally raised anough funds to purchase the vitally important ECMO machine.

"We are delighted to be able to announce that we have now raised in excess of 38000, with over 4k coming from members of KUMB.com," he wrote. "We cannot thank you enough.

"Heartlink have advised us that the machine will be ready to hand over early next year, ready to save lives. On a personal note, Willow has made a near miraculous recovery from both the myocarditis and the subsequent stroke she suffered.

"She has the heart function of a normal four-year-old, has been discharged from the neurological team in Leicester (who still don't understand how there was no long term damage) and is now a season ticket holder with me in block 256. Some would say she's suffered enough already !

"Much love to all who shared our story, bought the signed shirts, helped with the auction or donated whatever they could, with special mention to Kevin Nolan who personally arranged the signed shirts for auction and all at West Ham for the follow up work."

In February 2014, an auction of player's shirts resulted in KUMB readers raising in excess of 4,000 for the fund. Mark Noble's shirt raised 800 alone, whilst Kevin Nolan and Andy Carroll's fetched nearly 700 each from kind-hearted Hammers fans.

* ECMO machines are similar to heart-lung bypass machines used for open-heart surgery. 'Extra corporeal' means 'outside the body', and a 'membrane oxygenator' is a piece of equipment which delivers oxygen into the child's blood.

* The Heart Link Children's Charity has been running since 1981. For more information, visit their website.

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