London - A boy with cancer died in his mother’s arms after telling her: "Mummy, I’m sorry for this."
Charlie Proctor needed a liver transplant after being diagnosed with a rare tumour in 2016.
But despite an £850 000 (about R16-million) appeal to fund treatment in the US, the five-year-old lost his battle on Friday.
Mother Amber Schofield said her son had become "sad, tired, fed up and depressed" in his final days and his main words were: "I don’t know what to do any more." In a poignant post online before he died, she wrote: "Charlie, at one point, turned to me and said in the most quiet, panting voice, 'Mummy, I’m so sorry for this'.
"He was sorry because he wanted to move again and he felt he had to apologise for that? My heart broke! Having to watch them deteriorate in this way is the most painful thing anyone will ever feel. If Charlie’s fate is to go, then I’d rather the angels took him weeks ago before he suffered any more."
Schofield, 24, had added how she wanted well-wishers to remember how he looked, how cheeky he was, how hilarious, how grumpy he was because right now Charlie isn’t any of those". The brave youngster underwent chemotherapy after being diagnosed with hepatoblastoma – a rare childhood liver tumour.
But specialists told Schofield and Charlie’s father Ben Proctor there was nothing more the NHS could do for him after the cancer spread to his lungs.
Friends and family tried to raise more than £855 000 to send the youngster to America for life-saving treatment. Almost £360 000 had been pledged to help Charlie, including a £10 000 donation from US pop singer Pink.
But they had to abandon their efforts after doctors said he had deteriorated too much.
Last month the family were told Charlie had just two weeks left to live and brought forward his sixth birthday. He had been looking forward to celebrating the milestone so much that relatives gathered to mark the youngster’s birthday a full six months early.
Just three weeks later he died. On Saturday Schofield, from Accrington, Lancashire, posted a picture of her little boy with angel wings. She wrote: "Last night at 23:14 my best friend, my world, Charlie, took his final breath. He fell asleep peacefully cuddled in my arms with daddy’s arms wrapped around us. Our hearts are aching. The world has lost an incredible little boy. Charlie, you gave me a chance to be a mum.
"You have been not only our biggest inspiration but you have been an inspiration to thousands of people all over the world."