Race to raise cash for Luca
Updated 8:49am Friday 24th January 2014 in By Marion Sauvebois
THE clock is ticking for the Railton family who must secure £135,000 by the end of next month to enable Luca, 10, to receive pioneering surgery and save him from having a leg amputated.
Luca’s parents Teresa and Alex Railton have launched a push to raise the sum in time for the operation to be performed in Florida on March 27.
Luca, who attends Prior Park School, in Cricklade, was born with no bone in his right knee, no right tibia and only a partial left tibia due to a rare condition called bilateral tibial hemimelia, which affects one in a million people.
In February last year, doctors in Oxford told the family nothing more could be done and that they would have to amputate or fuse his right leg straight.
But American surgeon Dr Dror Paley has assured his parents he could treat Luca and help him walk without callipers.
The Railtons have so far collected £52,000 thanks to a donation of £1,800 yesterday from Swindon boxing events firm Neilson Promotions.
Speaking about the latest donation, Teresa, 42, an IT manager for Zeal Solutions Ltd, said: “Neilson Promotions jumped at the chance to help.
“They had a boxing event to support Luca and held an auction for us.
“We have had so much support from the community. It has been absolutely unbelievable.
“Luca is finding it overwhelming but he’s very humble about it.”
“We have got to keep pushing and we are confident that it is achievable. We will see what we have at the end of February and review our plans then.
“We have been exploring other avenues, like remortgaging our house.
“This operation will give him a better quality of life and allow him to walk pain free. We only have one child and we have got to do what is right for him.”
The appeal received a blow when £400 raised by G5 Martial Arts in aid of Luca was stolen earlier this month. Thankfully a benefactor offered to replace it.
Luca has had more than 60 hours of surgery to help him walk with the aid of leg supports.
In 2005, a German surgeon flew to England and performed 10 hours of surgery at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford to put metal frames on his legs.
After nine months, the frames were removed and Luca took his first steps with the help of callipers and a walking frame.
The latest surgery will take place in stages over six months.
Doctors will operate on Luca's ankles and left knee, and his right leg will be lengthened and fused in a way that will still allow him to run around.
Tony Neilson said the business was determined to promote the appeal and continue to raise funds for Luca.
“Luca is a lovely lad but unfortunately he can’t do everything other kids his age can do. This operation will change his life without a doubt. His parents only have a certain amount of time to get the money together and they need help.”
Anyone who would like to donate towards Luca’s operation visit www.facebook.com/ lucarailton.