On 03 June 2018 CHOC commemorated Cancer Survivors Day and in this edition, we would like to highlight the story of Childhood Cancer Survivor, Matthew James Reid.
Matthew was born on 25th February 2003 and was diagnosed with Burkitts Lymphoma in 2010.He was treated at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital from June 2010 to August 2010 where he came into contact with CHOC. Burkitts Lymphoma is a Lymphoma in the lymph glands and these account for 11 % of childhood cancers in Western countries. During his treatment, Matthew came into contact with time CHOC’s volunteers who handed him a carebag and often visited his bedside and provided his parents with a cup of coffee and a muffin.
Matthew always loved sports and his cancer never got in his way. In 2013 he started playing squash and nn 2014 was already selected for the Western Province(WP) under 11 team to go onto the Interprovincial Tour. In 2015 he played for the WP B team and a year lateri was receognised as first place in the WP A Team (Under 13) and this continued to 2017 where he was in the A Team (Under 14).
The same year he was awarded SA Schools colours for Squash at the SA Inter Provincial Tournament and the Peter Van Der Bijl Award for All round Excellence – one of the top awards in Bishops Preparatory School. He also won the Design Tech award at Bishops that year. His excellence was not only in squash as he also played A team water polo, and Hockey for his school.
This year, he is the only under 15 in the A Team in line to be in the WP Under 16 A Team for squash – to go to the SA IPT in East London in June 2018. . Today Matthew is a proud childhood cancer survivor and eager to take on life wholeheartedly.
Matthew is currently part of CHOC’s Survivor programme and his father, Ian Reid serves on the Western Cape Regional Committee.