Last bell rings an end to brave boy's fight
AFTER almost 1300 days living with leukaemia, Hayden Lee finally got to ring the 'Last Chemo Bell' - signifying the end of a confronting treatment process.
The energetic six-year-old was surrounded by family and school friends at Mackay Base Hospital as the curtain was drawn on his days in hospital.
Since his diagnosis in 2016 Hayden's energy and optimism, even through this daunting chapter, has been infectious and rubbed off on those around him. His mum, Nyree Lee, said the family needed that presence around them.
"It has been tough, but also we've seen it tougher," Mrs Lee said. "We've seen other people not get to take their children home, so every day we did we were very grateful."
Following his initial diagnosis, the family had to relocate to Brisbane for nine months as Hayden underwent intensive treatment.
His father Tony Lee, a Mackay police officer, said his family received support from Queensland Police Service to help with the burden of relocating.
Overwhelmed with gratitude for the support they received from all corners, Mr Lee said Hayden had taught him a lot about remaining positive even in the most harrowing of times.
"When we first started we were in a very deep, dark tunnel and we didn't know how we were going to get to the end," he said.
"Thankfully that day has come and it's a lot easier looking back than what it was looking forward."