BIKERS from all over the country descended on a renowned biker cafe to meet up with brave Leeds cancer survivor Joseph Lillywhite as he continues to raise cash to help other youngsters fight the disease.
More than 50 bikers rode their machines from all over the UK to Squires cafe at Sherburn-in-Elmet on Saturday as part of a Ride2Cure fundraising rally in aid of The Neuroblastoma Children’s Alliance (NCCA).
The money raised on the rally will go towards vital research into new treatments for neuroblastoma.
Seven-year-old Joseph, of Barwick-in-Elmet, got the chance to sit on and rev up a vintage Harley Davidson along with a powerful new BMW bike at the event.
Joseph was diagnosed with aggressive childhood cancer neuroblastoma in January 2013 and has undergone chemotherapy, surgery and immunotherapy.
He was declared cancer free last February, but still has regular tests and check-ups in hospital.
His mother Helen, 38, said: “He absolutely loved having a go on the bikes and revving a few engines. He had great fun. Joseph is pretty much living a normal life now as seven-year-old boy. He is at school full-time, which he enjoys.
“We couldn’t envisage ever getting out of hospital and him being able to live as normal little boy again. We feel really blessed.
She added: “Joseph is a very brave little boy who has dealt with far too much pain and suffering in his early years. He has fought with grit and determination and we are very proud of him.”
Joseph’s family and friends have raised more than £285,000 for the ‘Joseph Lillywhite’s Journey’ charity and hope to reach a target of £500,000.
Joseph was diagnosed with stage four neuroblastoma after being slightly unwell for a few weeks with a virus in January 2013. A series of tests revealed a tumour had grown around his kidney and cancer had spread to his bones. Long term survival for children with high risk neuroblastoma is less than half the average rate for other childhood cancers.