11/10/2010 – Lewis Hanson, aged 17, from Exmouth, has had his greatest wish to ride in a Shelby 1967 Mustang granted by Starlight Children’s Foundation, the UK’s leading wish granting charity for children with serious and terminal illnesses.
The brave teenager was recently diagnosed with Fabry Disease, a rare disease that causes a wide range of systemic symptoms, including kidney and cardiac complications. Lewis is no newcomer to serious medical conditions – during his childhood, he developed insulin dependant diabetes, epilepsy and coeliacs disease and is used to frequent hospital visits and medical tests.
Lewis says of one aspect of his current treatment: “I have to have an infusion every other week and I don’t like this as I always feel like I am going to faint when the needle goes in.”
Despite this and all the other difficulties that Lewis has had to endure, mum Louise says he is a “sensitive and caring young man, who is always thinking of other people and is always quick to jump to the defence of anyone having a tough time.”
With a vivid interest in cars, Lewis has always longed to take a ride in his favourite – the Shelby 1967 Mustang – and when he was referred to Starlight, he knew immediately what his wish of a lifetime would be.
Keen to make Lewis’ wish a reality, Starlight found a private collection of classic cars with this special model. The owner of the collection, Philip Walker, was thrilled to be able to invite Lewis and parents Louise and Simon to visit and the family spent the day exploring the wonderful classic car collection.
The highlight of the day was naturally the ride in the Mustang, which really was a dream come true for Lewis. Philip took Lewis for a long drive around the countryside so that he could see the car put through its paces. Lewis was even driven to a special model shop, where he was given an exact model replica of the Mustang.
Louise said: “The day was really amazing. Lewis has had such a tough year and it really cheered him up enormously. He has been very quiet recently and since that day it has been lovely to see him talking much more. Lewis’ confidence has really been knocked and, after everything that he has been through, he really deserved something special. I honestly can’t thank Philip Walker and all of Starlight’s supporters enough for helping to make this wonderful wish come true.”
Contact: Henny Breakwell
Tel: 020 7262 2881 #231
Starlight grants a once-in-a-lifetime wish for seriously and terminally ill children, restoring the magic and fun of childhood and giving the whole family happy memories to share, whatever the future holds.
Starlight also creates entertainment in every hospital and hospice throughout the UK. Sick children go to Starlight parties, laugh their way through pantomimes, go out on Starlight Escapes, play games and watch films on the Starlight Fun Centre, and enjoy the toys and puzzles of the Starlight Distraction Box. Happy children respond better to treatment and Starlight helps children to forget about their illness and simply have a bit of fun.
You can make a donation online or by calling us on 020 7262 2881. For every £1 you donate, Starlight can assure you that 91p goes towards helping very ill children. To refer a child for a wish, simply complete our wish referral form.