A five-year-old boy with two prosthetic legs walked 10 kilometres in June, raising millions of dollars in support of the U.K.’s National Health Service.
Tony Hudgell lost both of his legs to abuse he suffered at the hands of his biological parents as a newborn, CNN reports.
At just 41 days old, he suffered multiple fractures, limb dislocations and blunt trauma, and developed sepsis after he was left untreated for nearly 10 days, his Facebook page says.
But Tony has majorly overcome the odds. Not only is he able to walk with two prosthetic legs, he even set out to raise a small sum of money to honour Evelina London Children’s Hospital, where staff saved his life.
As of Friday morning, Tony’s fundraiser hit £1.2 million (CA$2 million), an astounding sum of money given the original goal of £509 (CA$861).
Friends, family, hospital staff and hoards of supporters clapped and cheered for him on his final day of walking. But most proud, of course, are his adoptive parents, Paula and Mark Hudgell.
Tony hugged them as he crossed the finish line on June 30 in his hometown of West Malling in Kent, The Scotsman says.
“It is incredible to think that just a few weeks ago, Tony could barely take a few steps,” Tony’s mom, Paula, told the PA Media news agency at the event. “I still can’t get my head around it to be honest. It still doesn’t seem real.”
The boy only recently learned to walk on crutches, CNN says, and is raising money to get himself the best possible equipment for his future.
His journey to walking 10 kilometres by the end of June, his JustGiving page reads, was inspired by Captain Tom Moore, the 100-year-old war veteran who raised $40 million for the NHS by doing 100 laps of his back garden.
According to The Scotsman, money raised by Tony will go towards helping fund research, revamping new facilities and purchasing cutting-edge technology.