Alfie rings end of treatment cancer bell at Alder Hey to give his mum and dad the only Christmas present they wanted
2 months ago
Alfie Montgomery is looking forward to hearing Santa’s sleigh bells this Christmas – but it’s the sound of a very different bell mum Kristy is celebrating.
The six-year-old schoolboy has just rung the end of treatment bell at Alder Hey after being diagnosed with cancer over three years ago.
Kristy says: “This was the bell me and his dad wanted to hear – and when he rang it it was unbelievable.
“There aren’t any words for how we feel right now, but we are made up and getting ready for our best Christmas ever.”
And she adds: “We don’t need any presents this year because we’ve got the one we wanted more than anything – Alfie getting better and getting the all clear.”
Alfie, from Dingle, was only three when he diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) in October 2020.
Kristy, 33, says: “He had been sick for a couple of weeks and it was put down to viral infections and ear infections, but he just wasn’t getting any better.
“I rang 111 and they advised me to take him to Alder Hey – and we were only there for four hours when they diagnosed leukaemia after carrying out a blood test.”
She goes on: “It obviously wasn’t what we were expecting and, to be honest, we were terrified.
“Alfie underwent a month-long intensive course of chemotherapy, and then further rounds of chemo until May the following year; and even after that he had to have different types of maintenance treatment both at home and in hospital.”
Alfie’s Consultant Oncologist, Dr Chris Howell explains: “ALL is a type of cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow. To treat ALL we needed to get his disease into remission with a month of fairly intensive chemotherapy, then stop it coming back with further chemotherapy over the following three years.”
“It was hard for me and Ian seeing him go through it,” admits Kristy. “Like any parents, if we could have swapped places with him we would have.
“Alfie knew he was ill but he didn’t really understand exactly what was going on, and he took it all in his stride.
“Thankfully, although we were worried, Alder Hey were confident that his cancer could be treated and he could make a full recovery, and we are so grateful to Alder Hey for all they’ve done. They’ve been amazing, we couldn’t ask any more of them.”
Alfie, who goes to St Charles’ Catholic Primary School in Aigburth, rang the end of treatment bell on December 8, surrounded by his family and the staff who helped him on the road to recovery, and he thanked them for making him better!
Kristy smiles: “We can’t wait to spend Christmas together now as a family. We’ve got a big family and we will be celebrating with them – Christmas itself but, most importantly, Alfie’s recovery.
“Alfie is excited about Christmas and he’s asked for an electric scooter … which I think Father Christmas might bring him.
“We can’t thank everyone enough on ward 3B for looking after us all and their continued care and compassion. This is going to be our best Christmas yet, and what a great way to start a new year and 2024 knowing that Alfie is better.”