Two years after he underwent surgery, eight-year Caleb McLean’s cancer has returned, and the his family is trying to raise funds for the vacation cruise he asked for. Supplied

VIDEO: Campaign to provide a last, dream vacation for terminally ill B.C. boy

Eight-year-old asked for a cruise on the ‘Disney Boat’

An online campaign to send a terminally ill eight-year-old B.C. boy on a Disney cruise with his family is gaining momentum.

His family has been told it will likely be the last vacation for Caleb McLean of Langley, whose cancer has returned, two years after he was first operated on.

Father Travis McLean said attempts to remove one of two resurgent tumors have only been partially successful, and doctors have told them Caleb only has months to live.

“I don’t believe them,” McLean said, struggling to keep his composure.

“I think my son is a fighter. He’s going to defeat the odds.”

When a visitor from Make-A-Wish BC and Yukon, a charity that grants wishes to seriously ill kids, asked Caleb what he would like, he said he wanted to go on the “Disney boat” with his mother, father and all five siblings.

That was more than the foundation could cover, and the family was told the trip would only be possible with Caleb, both his parents, and just one of his five siblings.

“It’s unfortunate,” Travis said.

“I have nothing against Make-A-Wish. I can kind of see where they’re coming from. You don’t realize how many kids have cancer [and would qualify to have their wish granted by the foundation] until you’ve been to an oncology ward.”

Caleb’s aunt Danielle Glynn responded by setting up an online gofundme campaign called “Caleb’s Last Vacation” to raise the estimated $45,000 it would cost to sent Caleb, his parents and all five siblings on his dream vacation.

“He’s a big heart in a little body,” a tearful Glynn said of her nephew. “He lights up the room with his smile.”

In the first three days, more than 190 people have donated about $23,000 to the campaign and the pace of contributions has picked up as word spreads, Glynn said.

Like her brother, Glynn said she understands the foundation has to stay within a budget, and she has nothing bad to say about it.

But asking a family to choose which of five children will accompany their brother on his last vacation “just sucks,” Glynn said.

“How do you pick which sibling?”

A spokesperson for Make-A-Wish BC and Yukon, Stuart Chase, said they are discussing an “alternate” arrangement with the family that would be within the foundation’s budget.

“That’s the reality we work with every day.” said Chase, the marketing and communications director for the charity.

“We are totally donation-based, not government funded.”

Chase had nothing but positive things to say about the family GoFundMe initiative for Caleb.

“It’s really awesome that they’re going to bat for him,” Chase said.

_________________________________

Is there more to this story?

roxanne.hooper@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

_________________________________

 

When the Children’s Make-A-Wish Foundation said it was unable to send all five siblings on a last vacation with Caleb McLean, Danielle Glynn launched an online campaign on behalf of her nephew. Her brother is Caleb’s father, Travis, who sad he remains optimistic, even though doctors have said the eight-year-old may only have months left. Dan Ferguson Langley Advance Times

An image from a home movie of Caleb McLean singing the song “never enough” fron the movie, “The Greatest Showman.”

Just Posted

CSRD Board backs more consultation on plans to help caribou

It is feared that the caribou recovery plans could result in closure of backcountry areas

Update: RCMP confirm body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: A sunny Easter Sunday

Temperatures will peak at approximately 20C region-wide

Gathering in Salmon Arm to offer support, resources after shooting

Agencies join to provide practical assistance from 4:30 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 23 at rec centre

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: Clear skies and pushing 20 C

Environement Canada forcasts a sunny and warm Easter weekend

‘No answers:’ Canadians react to Sri Lanka bombings that killed hundreds

The co-ordinated bomb attacks killed at least 207 people and injured 450 more on Easter Sunday

Pets still missing after Peachland home fire

Two Pomeranians and two cats are missing after fire

Okanagan student shows skill at provincial finals

Aidan Eglin of Armstrong won website development event at Skills Canada’s B.C. finals in Abbotsford

Kootnekoff: Easter Bunny legal woes

Several years ago, our young daughter needed to know: “Is Santa Claus… Continue reading

Okanagan fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware cats were in wood pile in yard near garbage pile fire that got away

Okanagan township’s open burning winds down

Spallumcheen reminds residents of regulation changes as open burning concludes April 30

Children gather for Easter festival in Summerland

Fourth annual Easter Egg-stravaganza included activities and egg hunt

Most Read