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Walsham-le-Willows youngster Elodie Waugh, six, receives the all clear from serious blood condition





A Suffolk youngster is today celebrating her sixth birthday with the gift of life after enduring two years of hospital visits due to a serious illness.

Elodie Waugh, six, of Walsham-le-Willows, near Bury St Edmunds, has been given the all clear after being diagnosed with the rare blood condition aplastic anaemia in July 2022 following liver failure and bone marrow failure.

Her diagnosis resulted in multiple month-long stints at King’s Hospital and Great Ormond Street Hospital, in London, where she had more than 50 blood transfusions, chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant.

Elodie Waugh, six, has received the all clear after being diagnosed with a rare blood condition two years ago. Picture: Submitted
Elodie Waugh, six, has received the all clear after being diagnosed with a rare blood condition two years ago. Picture: Submitted
Today is Elodie's sixth birthday. Picture: Submitted
Today is Elodie's sixth birthday. Picture: Submitted

Now, Elodie’s family is hosting a village fun day to thank the community for their support during the difficult time.

Her mum Kayleigh, 35, said: “Without the transfusions she would have died.

“We felt like we were living through a constant state of anxiety – but you have to learn to deal with it the best you can.

The Waugh family of mum Kayleigh, Elodie, Oscar and dad Ali with some lambs. Picture: Submitted
The Waugh family of mum Kayleigh, Elodie, Oscar and dad Ali with some lambs. Picture: Submitted
This photo is from February 2023. Picture: Submitted
This photo is from February 2023. Picture: Submitted

“You get so consumed in the medical world and you learn so many different terms and jargon. It’s all you know, it’s all you do.”

Kayleigh and her husband Ali remained by their daughter’s side throughout her treatments in London, causing the family to miss Elodie’s brother Oscar’s second birthday as well as Christmas.

During this time, the family received support through a GoFundMe page which raised more than £13,000.

The community in the village rallied together to help with the expenses of staying in London, childcare for Oscar and maintaining their home while they were away.

Bury Town assistant manager Paul Musgrove before running the Manchester Marathon with Elodie and Kayleigh. Picture: Mecha Morton
Bury Town assistant manager Paul Musgrove before running the Manchester Marathon with Elodie and Kayleigh. Picture: Mecha Morton
The family bought a caravan with the funds raised by Bury Town assistant manager Paul 'Muzzy' Musgrove. Picture: Submitted
The family bought a caravan with the funds raised by Bury Town assistant manager Paul 'Muzzy' Musgrove. Picture: Submitted
Elodie and Oscar are looking forward to more caravan holidays with 'The Musgrove Suite'.
Elodie and Oscar are looking forward to more caravan holidays with 'The Musgrove Suite'.

One fund-raising highlight was when Bury Town assistant manager Paul ‘Muzzy’ Musgrove ran last year’s Manchester Marathon to raise £6,630 for the family.

Kayleigh said they waited for the right time to spend Paul’s funds, before deciding to buy a caravan affectionately named ‘The Musgrove Suite’.

“We’re so thankful to Muzzy,” she said. “The caravan is going to help us create even more memories for as long as we can.”

Elodie with her younger brother, Oscar. Picture: Submitted
Elodie with her younger brother, Oscar. Picture: Submitted

Elodie received her first immunisations this week and has been officially cured of aplastic anaemia.

The family is now hosting Elodie’s Fun Day on July 7, at Walsham-le-Willows Sports Club, to say thank you to the village community.

The free family-fun event will include a dog show, inflatables, games, a raffle and activities, with charity buckets for West Suffolk Hospital charity My WiSH and the Rainbow Ward.

Kayleigh said: “I know a lot of people from our community felt really hopeless while we were away – so I had to think of a way to say thank you to everyone on a large scale.

“We have been completely blown away by the support and it made us realise how lucky we are in to live in this lovely community.”

The mum-of-two also emphasised the importance of donating blood and is urging readers to sign up to stem cell register to help save people like Elodie.

Every year, more than 400 patients in the UK cannot have the life-saving treatment because they lack a suitable donor.