What started with the promise of an exciting family holiday has ended in tragedy for the Barrell family.
The family left their Wagga home in July ready for three weeks of driving through central Australia.
Ethan, then seven years old, started vomiting two hours into the trip with what was suspected to be a virus caught from school.
As Ethan’s condition worsened, an ambulance was called to the side of the road and the family’s first of many trips to a medical centre diagnosed him with a stomach bug.
After 12 days of vomiting, belly pain and lethargy, doctors in Alice Springs did blood tests, ultra sounds and a CT to reveal an epigastric mass near his pancreas.
It was the incident that stopped the holiday and propelled Ethan into hospital in Adelaide.
Ethan was diagnosed with Burkitts lymphoma B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma on July 20, an aggressive and rare cancer.
“Our hearts sank that day,” Ethan’s mother, Rach Barrell, said.
The Barrell family has been in Westmead Children’s Hospital in Sydney since then for six months of treatment.
Frances and Darren Conroy are friends of the Barrell family and are hosting a trivia night on November 19 at the Rules Club.
Food platters will be supplied for each table.
Tables can be booked, and paid for in advance, by contacting Mrs Conroy on 0413 641 703.