A determined Warwickshire dad is embarking on an overnight marathon with his oldest son to raise funds for an operation that could help his youngest child to walk. Lincoln Hookey, seven, from Warwick, has cerebral palsy which restricts his mobility and personal independence.
His condition causes stiffness, spasms and pain resulting in him being heavily reliant on the support of aides and his wheelchair. Now, his family is desperate to pay for specialist surgery, not funded by the NHS, that could change Lincoln’s life forever.
The money they raise from the marathon would go towards the surgery itself, during a month-long stay at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, as well as specialised post-operative physiotherapy and private rehabilitation physio once discharged.
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“Lincoln missed so many firsts in his first five years and continues to do so,” mum Sarah, 41, said. “With the help of community, fundraising and this surgery he might be able to claim some of those back.
“He said after his surgery he is looking forward to all the things he can do, like riding a bike, playing football, and even carrying a glass of water without spilling it. He has a tenacious stubborn streak which just makes him even more determined.”
Sarah, who recently raised £1,000 for Lincoln’s appeal by completing the Two Castles Run between Warwick and Kenilworth alongside Simon and childhood friend Verity Slatem, added: “This operation won’t just change his physical outlook, pain management, but his mental and social wellbeing too.
“The world is much more of an inclusive place than it used to be, but he still doesn’t get to do everything he so desperately wants to or should be able should he choose.”
Lincoln’s dad Simon, 46, a service delivery manager, brother William, 17, and others are living up to their side of the fundraising bargain by taking on a night-time 26-mile ‘Warrior Walk for Lincoln’.
Organised and supported by Ed Hargreaves, of military training inspired Warrior Strong Fitness, the walk will take place on July 21. The family has so far raised almost £11,000 thanks to donations and fundraising events.
Family friend Simon Pitchford completed the gruelling Beyond the Ultimate Highland Ultra 2023, a self-sufficient three-day coastal mountain race over 125km and with 5,000m of elevation. The stunt, navigated whilst wearing a 14kg backpack in true special forces fashion, raised in excess of £5,000 for Lincoln.
Sarah added: “Lincoln’s mantra at the moment, is ‘I pick myself up, dust myself off and keep going’. “‘The show must go on’. It’s borrowed from a well-known kid’s programme, but the sentiment is right there.”
Other forthcoming events include ‘dress down’ days at Lincoln’s former nursery King’s Meadow in Warwick. Throughout the summer donations from Friday night events at the Tap Yard at Church Farm Brewery, near Warwick, will also go into the pot.
The Warwick 7th Beaver Colony, of which Lincoln is a member, has organised a sponsored bounce on July 7 and a ‘bucket shake’ at Morrison’s in Leamington Spa. Sarah added: “The family is overwhelmed with the support we have received so far.
“He is a well-loved family member, classmate and friend to many in the community. We hope we are on track to raise what Lincoln needs by the autumn.” Other events are in the pipeline and the family is also reaching out for corporate financial support, match funding opportunities and donations for a raffle.
To donate to Lincoln’s fund visit his Tree of Hope webpage or to sponsor Simon and William on their Warrior Walk, visit their JustGiving page.
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