VIDEO: Ramsey football fan Charlie, 10, heads for Wembley
- Credit: Archant
Football fan Charlie Stacey-Tate has had to struggle in his first few years more than anyone should have to bear in a lifetime.
But today he gets to put all that behind him when he walks out with the teams for the England v Germany international on Wembley’s hallowed turf.
The 10-year-old got the opportunity to be one of the mascots when the charity Sports Connections Foundation heard of the Ramsey Junior School pupil’s battle for life.
Charlie, of Canberra Court, Ramsey, had gone for a weekend swim two-and-a-half years ago when his father Adrian noticed a bump on his side – it was later diagnosed as Neuroblastoma, an aggressive form of cancer found in 100 children in the UK each year.
Rigorous chemotherapy followed and then a nine-hour operation to remove an 8lb tumour. The tumour was so big it had displaced his lungs, digestive system and bladder, and Charlie had to have a kidney taken out.
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“We were on a knife’s edge at one point,” said Mr Tate. “It was horrendous for Charlie, for myself and his mum Georgina. It is not something you would wish on anyone. But he has been in remission now for more than a year and now we are really excited about going to Wembley. I was at work one day when I received a call from Addenbrooke’s Hospital to say that Charlie had been nominated. It is a brilliant opportunity for him.”
Sports Connections Foundation was started by two former professional footballers who both attended Hinchingbrooke School, Richard Philp and Junior McDougald. They heard that Charlie was a football fan and a great supporter of Arsenal and made his ‘Sporting Wish’ come true.
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Mr Philp said: “What better way to inspire Charlie who loves his football than to walk out with England’s best? This is a new chapter in his life having had such a struggle and his Wembley outing will be a beautiful moment for him and his dad.”
Charlie will also walk out with three of his favourite Arsenal players who represent Germany – Per Mertesacker, Lukas Podolski and Mesut Ozil, following his chauffeur driven journey to Wembley with his dad, who will be watching proudly from the stands.
INFORMATION: To find out more visit www.scfoundation.org.uk.
? Thongsley Fields Primary School pupil Arbaaz Mir ended up on the winning side on Friday despite England losing to Chile.
The 11-year-old from Huntingdon was one of the mascots for Chile last week after being picked by Sports Connections Foundation.