Starlight Children’s Foundation, the UK’s number one wish granting charity for children suffering from serious and terminal illnesses, has just granted brave Geoffrey Gower (12) from Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire his dearest wish, to climb the steps of the coliseum in Rome.
In January 2008, Geoffrey Gower was diagnosed with a very rare form of cancer called a pnet/ewings sarcoma, which is a tumour on the lower part of the spine, and affects just 30 children a year. Although Geoffrey has been through a great deal of treatment including operations and was thought to have been in remission, he very sadly relapsed this April and is now undergoing further treatment. Geoffrey’s parents wanted to give their son, who is “a constant inspiration and support to us all”, something very special to look forward to. Fascinated by history – in particular the Roman Empire – Geoffrey’s wish was to climb the steps of the Colosseum.
His mum, Anne, wrote to Starlight saying: “To stand in the coliseum, a place where real gladiators fought and Roman people watched, would be truly magical to Geoffrey. To be there and close his eyes and imagine what it would have been like would be priceless not only to Geoffrey, but to all the family as a reward for the long and stressful journey he has been forced to take.”
Starlight waved its magic wand and last month the whole family were transported to Rome where Geoffrey’s dearest wish came true. Geoffrey, his mum, dad and sister Rachel (10) had the most wonderful week in Rome, visiting all the attractions on a hopper bus and of course going to the Colosseum.
Anne said: “We all had the most wonderful time and are so grateful for Starlight for making Geoffrey’s wish come true. It was something he had always wanted to do and was absolutely a dream come true for all of us! We are so proud of Geoffrey for everything he has done, including raising over £6000 for various charities through a charity disco which he organised whilst he was in hospital. We have wonderful memories of this very special holiday which will remain with us forever.”