On a post on Camps Bay High School’s Facebook page, Leeanne’s father explained they went for tests after Leanne had broken out into a rash and was complaining of tiredness and a gland in her neck that “didn’t feel right”. The tests were inconclusive and she was referred to a specialist first at Groote Schuur Hospital, but due to COVID-19 she was sent to Victoria Hospital.
On the morning of our appointment at Victoria Hospital, Covid-19 had also become high risk there and I just could not take Leeanne there with the thought that she could possibly contract Covid on top of cancer. I was in a dark hole and thought that as a family, we were facing this storm on our own,” Martin Osner said.
“Looking back, that day feels surreal. To make matters worse, I am self-employed and due to difficult times a short while prior, we had to cancel our medical insurance. Never did I for one minute conceive that one of our children would fall desperately ill.”
Osner managed to pull together donations for the much-needed CAT scan. At Constantiaberg she underwent various tests, scans and the biopsy needed for diagnosis and a few days later it was confirmed she had Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a blood cancer that attacks the immune system of the body.
“We could only get an appointment at Groote Schuur after Christmas, so we decided to consult with Dr du Toit, the resident Hematologist at Constantiaberg Private Hospital, on his advice for treatment. The severity of the condition hit home as he said the cancer was at Stage III. Dr du Toit said that although Groote Schuur Hospital was outstanding, the state facility would only be able to start treatment mid-January or even later,” explained Osner.
Leeanne had the surgery to place a port in her chest so the medicine could be directly fed to her heart. Family and friends managed to raise enough funds for this operation, the bone marrow biopsy and twelve chemotherapy sessions. She had her first round of treatment on January 7.
“Leeanne’s journey to full recovery has now begun. On behalf of my family, and Qiyam, we cannot express our gratitude enough to every single person who has helped us this far, financially – from the $1 donation to generous blessings we have received, empathy, encouragement and kind words and most importantly prayer. We are overwhelmed with emotion and eternally grateful,” said her father.
You can follow her journey and find out how to contribute towards Leeanne’s treatments below, the family have opened a dedicated account: