Brave youngster flying out to America to begin rare treatment

A brave schoolboy battling cancer is set to begin a course of vital treatment in the USA aimed at saving his eyesight.

Daniel Mason, 11, from Washington, was first diagnosed with a brain tumour two years ago.

Daniel Mason, who is flying out to America for treatment.

Daniel Mason, who is flying out to America for treatment.

He courageously underwent a course of chemotherapy, but as the tumour was on his optic nerve, they were unable to safely remove it.

The George Washington Primary School pupil and his family recently discovered that the tumour had grown slightly, and he now requires proton-beam therapy to save the sight in his right eye.

The therapy is unavailable in the UK, so Daniel, mum Nina Jonas, dad Steve Mason and sister Anna, 16, are travelling to Jacksonville, Florida, ahead of a 10-week course of treatment.

Nina, of Coverdale Avenue, Washington, said: “He had no growth on his tumour for nearly a year, and then the last MRI showed it had grown a little bit.

The match raised funds ahead of Daniel's trip to America.

The match raised funds ahead of Daniel's trip to America.

“It’s sitting on his optic nerve, so it’s the trickiest place for them and they can’t remove it.

“The tumour itself isn’t so bad, but this treatment is about saving his sight.

“We’re so proud of the way Daniel has coped with it all.

“He has kept us all going with his brilliant attitude.”

The treatment is funded by the NHS, as are travel and accomodation for Daniel and his parents.

A fundraising football match – in which Washington Juniors player Daniel played and scored a goal – took place in Washington yesterday to raise funds to help the family with other costs, including travel and accommodation for Daniel’s sister Anna.

The game was between a ladies team calling themselves “Dan’s Angels” and Washington Juniors Men’s Over-40s team, with Premier League referee Martin Atkinson on hand to officiate.

Nina added: “Football is a massive part of Daniel’s life, so this was a great way for people to come together for him.

“As long as he has a football there, he’s entertained.

“He even managed to continue playing football during his chemotherapy.

“Although the treatment is funded by the NHS, the funds which have been raised will allow Anna to come with us, because 10 weeks would have been a very long time to leave her on her own.

“Everyone has come together to support Daniel and the family and we can’t thank them enough.”