Alex gets the gift of a chance to walk
A MOTHER has received a dream Christmas gift, after learning that her two-year-old son has been accepted for life-changing surgery in the US that will enable him to walk independently for the first time.
Little Alex Hoban was diagnosed with cerebral palsy just over a year ago, a condition which also prevents him from being able to sit or stand unaided.
His parents Olwyn (34) and Tony Hoban (36) were warned by doctors in Ireland shortly after his diagnosis that the chances of the youngster ever walking were "very, very slim".
But last week they received a letter from prestigious St Louis Children's Hospital in Missouri, confirming that the toddler is an ideal candidate for selective dorsal rhizotomy surgery.
He has now been pencilled in for the €60,000 operation – which isn't covered by the HSE – next November, meaning his parents have a daunting task to raise the necessary funds.
But overjoyed Mrs Hoban, from Rathfarnham, said: "We're absolutely over the moon and I find it hard to put into words just what this letter means to me.
"It'll be tough to raise the money, but we'll find a way of doing it. This is the best Christmas present I could possibly imagine. It's like a Christmas miracle."