Sick Portlaoise baby gets €30k donation

An anonymous €30,000 donation has been made towards the cost of lifesaving treatment for a Portlaoise baby.

An anonymous €30,000 donation has been made towards the cost of lifesaving treatment for a Portlaoise baby.

Ellen Barron McGee, who will celebrate her first birthday with her twin sister Grace on April 14, was diagnosed with Mitochondrial Disorder last October.

This disorder previously took the life of Ellen’s brother Christian when he was 18 months old. The little girl is suffering more and more seizures daily, and her chances of survival rest on her receiving expensive stem cell treatment in California.

Her parents Lisa McGee and Tom Barron, from Esker Hills have been trying to fundraise the €50k necessary to take her to America for the treatment next month.

Now thanks to the extraordinarily generous gesture of a Laois dad of three who does not want to be named, Ellen is in with a chance of survival.

Ellen’s uncle Paul McGee from Dundalk, is co-ordinating fundraisers across Ireland. He took the phone call which changed Ellen’s fortunes.

“I told him we had got €20k in the bank, and he offered the rest. First I thought it was a set up. I was in absolute shock, I was on the phone in silence for about 15 seconds. There are some great people out there. This is a major boost for us,” says Paul, who intends to carry on fundraising, as Ellen may need several trips, costing €50k each time.

“I want to raise €300,000, and I will do it. We have got a response from the whole country. It’s really touching, especially in the middle of a recession,” he said.