Ol­lie in ap­peal to meet mu­si­cal idol

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - STU­ART GREER

THE fam­ily of a boy with a ter­mi­nal dis­ease have launched an on­line ap­peal for him to meet pop star Ed Sheeran.

Ol­lie Car­roll, five, has Bat­ten Dis­ease, a rare and de­gen­er­a­tive con­di­tion which will rob him of his speech, sight and even the abil­ity to walk and eat as he gets older.

Trag­i­cally Ol­lie, from Poyn­ton, is un­likely to sur­vive past 12 years old.

His fam­ily, which in­cludes mum Lucy and dad Mike, have cre­ated a wish list to give Ol­lie the best life they pos­si­bly can.

At the top of that list if meet­ing his idol Ed Sheeran, who plays two shows in Manchester in April.

They have launched a so­cial me­dia ap­peal – #ol­liesheeran – which in­cludes a touch­ing video mon­tage of Ol­lie singing along to Sheeran over the last two years.

It also fea­tures Ol­lie’s sis­ter Amelia, three, who has also been di­ag­nosed with Bat­tens, and a ten­der mo­ment when she leans over and kisses her brother while Sheeran’s bal­lad Think­ing Out Loud plays in the back­ground.

Mum Lucy said: “Since Ol­lie was a tiny tod­dler, he was singing and danc­ing to Ed Sheeran’s songs around the house and ev­ery time we got in the car.

“Ol­lie can’t sing any­more, Bat­ten Dis­ease has taken that from him. But he still lis­tens to Ed Sheeran all the time.

“We have so many mem­o­ries from birth­day parties to hold­ing Ol­lie in his hospi­tal bed with Ed play­ing in the back­ground.

“It would be in­cred­i­ble if we could tick off this part of Ol­lie’s wish list.”

Af­ter learn­ing of Ol­lie and Amelia’s dev­as­tat­ing di­ag­no­sis in 2015, his fam­ily and friends have ral­lied in sup­port. They set up Ol­lie’s Army, a cam­paign which aims to spread aware­ness of the rare dis­ease and raises funds to buy spe­cial­ist equip­ment as well as to fund fu­ture re­search into Bat­ten Dis­ease.

The cam­paign has been back by celebri­ties and sports stars.

In Oc­to­ber, Ol­lie made in­ter­na­tional head­lines when he hugged Prince Harry at the Wel­lChild Awards, which hon­our young chil­dren and their car­ers.

Since then, Ol­lie’s fam­ily have been given some hope at treat­ment to slow down the dis­ease.

He has been se­lected, along with Amelia, to be part of a drugs trial us­ing en­zyme ther­apy which re­quires the fam­ily to take fort­nightly trips to Great Or­mond Street in Lon­don for the treat­ment.

Lucy and Mike Car­roll with Ol­lie and Amelia

Ol­lie’s idol Ed Sheeran

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