Toddler given sky-high dream

2012-10-23 00:00

FOUR-YEAR-OLD Willem Lourens Britz was left speechless after his dream of flying over the Drakensberg was fulfilled yesterday.

The Standerton boy, who was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) last year, was accompanied by his mother, grandmother and younger sister on this life-changing experience.

“It was so beautiful. I cannot explain it. This was something we could not have given him,” his overjoyed mother, Lourien Schoultz told The Witness.

She said that Willem was very happy and surprisingly quiet during the entire helicopter ride.

“He was speechless. This was so unlike him. He said he wants to do it again,” she said, adding that despite the silence, he enjoyed every minute.

The dream was made possible by Reach For A Dream, an organisation which fulfils the dreams of children between three and 18 years of age who have been diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses, and was sponsored by Brett Tungay of Westline Aviation and Hennie & Ruda Gous of Vultures View, Bergview.

Willem’s dream has always been to fly in a helicopter. Schoultz said he would see helicopters in Pretoria and tell her “I want to fly”.

When the family visited the Drakensberg in March, Willem told his mother that he wanted to fly over the Drakensberg. And in August, Schoultz received exciting news from Reach For A Dream.

Her son’s dream was about to come true and she couldn’t share the good news with him.

“I had to keep it a secret,” she said.

Willem found out just as he was about to go on the helicopter. This was a highlight for Willem, who has been through a lot in his life.

After being diagnosed in September last year, he had to go through chemotherapy in the same month.

“It was devastating. I was hysterical,” added his mother.

But Willem showed his fighting spirit through it all and responded well to the therapy.

“He is doing better now and has a lot of energy.”

He finished chemotherapy in February this year, but will continue to have regular checkups every month until January 2015.

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