Boy, Five, Raises £1 Million For NHS Completing Walk On Prosthetic Legs
A young boy has managed to raise an incredible £1 million for the NHS after completing a charity walk on his new prosthetic legs.
Tony Hudgell, five, lost both of his legs after suffering physical abuse from his biological parents when he was just 41 days old. The injuries led to sepsis and multiple organ failure, with his condition becoming so severe that he had to have both limbs amputated at the knee.
The brave little lad, who has since been adopted by loving parents Paula and Mark, has been using the coronavirus lockdown to learn to walk on his new prosthetic limbs.
Inspired by the recent efforts of Captain Tom Moore, Tony set about turning his own personal challenge into a fundraiser, and set about raising £500 by walking 10km in 30 days.
However, the youngster absolutely smashed his target, and went on to rake in an amazing £1,073,121 for Evelina London Children's Hospital in Lambeth.
In celebration of his sterling work, Tony was honoured with the Prime Minister's Points of Light award yesterday, which is given to 'outstanding individual volunteers' for making a difference within their communities.
Tony's local Tory MP Tom Tugendhat presented the award, saying: "Tony Hudgell is an inspiration to everyone.
"He has captured the hearts of the nation and his challenge has enabled him to share just how special he is with everyone.
"It has been a privilege to know Tony since he was so young and vulnerable, and work with his family for many years to get justice for him.
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"His fundraising efforts are deservedly rewarded with the Prime Minister's Points of Light award and it is an honour to present this to him."
Tony's proud adoptive mum Paula, 52, said:"We as a family are absolutely thrilled that Tony has been honoured with this award.
"He knows he has raised some money for the hospital that saved his life but doesn't completely understand the enormity of the amount.
"He now knows he has won this award but the icing on the cake for Tony is a letter from the Prime Minister - he just loves Boris."
Tony, whose birth parents were each jailed for 10 years in 2018 for the abuse he faced as a baby, was fostered by Paula and her husband Mark, 55, when he was still receiving treatment in intensive care.
They later adopted him, with no knowledge that their son would go on to become an extraordinary local hero.
Paula, of Kings Hill in Kent, added: "It just goes to show from the most unfortunate start in life, with the right love and support, a huge amount of determination and a positive attitude you can succeed in life and make a real difference.
"Thank you so much for the recognition of what Tony has achieved."
Tony's achievement is believed to be the 25th largest fundraising effort in JustGiving's 20-year history. It is also the second-most successful walking challenge campaign ever - beaten only, of course, by Captain Tom.
Featured Image Credit: PA