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5th Nov 2019
Alder Hey patient Dante Marvin was recently awarded the Child of Courage Award at the Pride of Britain Awards.
Dante is 11 years old and from Liverpool. He was born with brittle bone disease and scoliosis. Dante has fractured or broken 92 bones in his life so far. He had 16 broken bones when he was still in his mum Rachael’s womb.
Brittle bone disease is a disorder that results in fragile bones that break easily. It’s typically present at birth and can affect one person in 20,000.
Dante has won Child of Courage at the 2019 Pride of Britain awards after his incredible attitude and his campaigning for other disabled children (for Variety Charity).
Dante had his first operation at Alder Hey in 2010 and has had 17 separate operations in total. Surgeons have inserted ‘growing rods’ in his limbs, which are used to help straighten bones and correct deformities whilst Dante grows.
Leroy James is Dante’s Consultant Orthopaedic surgeon and has been involved in Dante’s treatment at Alder Hey. Leroy knows Dante and his mum Rachael really well and is full of admiration for them both.
He said; “This is a most fitting reward for this remarkable person. He has been through so much in his life and he is an inspiration for not just other kids but for everyone who meets him.
“Dante is a breath of fresh air. He entertains us all with his effervescent personality. He is a remarkable young man and he impresses us all with his incredible attitude, maturity and intelligence. He is our mini-celebrity.”
Dante said, whose motto is ‘there are no disabilities, only abilities said;
“I’m so proud and honoured to be a role model for other disabled children.”
Proud mum Rachael says her son is happy if he is helping and making others happy.
“He never lets his condition get him down and he is always more concerned about other children being treated than himself.
“I don’t stop Dante from doing anything – he just gets on with it,” she explains with pride. “He hates seeing other children being sad.
“If I take him to hospital with a broken bone he is more bothered about the child in the bed opposite.
“He has got a high pain threshold and always defies what the doctors tell him. If they say he is going to be in hospital for a week, he makes it his mission to be home in a few days.
“Now he knows he is helping other disabled children. I am so proud.”
This year’s Pride of Britain will be broadcast on ITV1 at 8pm tonight (Tuesday 5th November 2019).
Are you on Twitter? Then give Dante a follow! > @TheDanteMarvin
Alder Hey Children's Charity