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

Grand Forks mulls in-kind options to support flood buyout residents

Staff estimate a $6.6 million difference between pre and post-flood value for Grand Forks buyouts

Boundary District Arts Council folds amid financial questions

The last board took over in November and could not find receipts for $8,000 in spending

Grand Forks fire chief found to have bullied, harassed volunteer firefighter: report

WorkSafeBC, third-party human resources investigation looking into allegations complete

Annual Columbia Basin Culture tour coming up Aug 10 and 11

There are locations across the region participating

PLACE NAMES: Grand Forks neighbourhoods, Part 1

Manlys and Ruckles key to Grand Forks townsite

Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman sentenced to life in prison

Experts say he will likely wind up at the federal government’s Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado

Olympic softball qualifier gets $150K boost from provincial government

2019 Americas Qualifier to be held in Surrey from Aug. 25-Sept. 1

Gas price inquiry questions Trans Mountain capacity, company denies collusion

The first of up to four days of oral hearings in the inquiry continue in Vancouver

‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

Overdoses caused by benzodiazepines can’t be reversed with opioid-overdose antidote naloxone

Will you be celebrating national hotdog day with any of these crazy flavours?

The popularity of hotdogs spans generations, cultures

Former home of accused Penticton shooter vandalized

Ex-wife of man who is accused of murdering four people had her house vandalized

Survivor of near-drowning in B.C. lake viewing life through new eyes

“If I died that day, the baby wouldn’t know his dad,” said 31-year-old Mariano Santander-Melo.

‘Beyond the call’: Teen in police custody gets birthday surprise by B.C. Mountie

Unusual celebration started when Staff Sgt. Paul Vadik went to visit the teen in his Coquitlam cell

Thunderstorms forecast across B.C.

Environment Canada has issued a thunderstorm watch for B.C.’s central Interior

Most Read