A Moray mum who raised more than £100,000 so her daughter can have cancer treatment in America has been congratulated by Alex Salmond.
Gail Paterson and three-year-old Eileidh met the former First Minister in Aberdeen yesterday following a landmark hospital appointment.
The toddler completed a series of tests at the Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital which will determine if she is free from high-risk neuroblastoma.
The aggressive childhood cancer means she has spent much of the past year having intensive therapy and her family are hopeful that the results will show she has beaten the disease.
However, four out of five children relapse after overcoming neuroblastoma, and Mrs Paterson set out to raise £100,000 to Eileidh can have pioneering treatment in the US to prevent that happening.
Mr Salmond invited the pair to the Caledonian Hotel in Aberdeen yesterday to celebrate the conclusion of the tests and express his admiration for their mammoth fundraising crusade.
Ms Paterson launched her appeal in April and last week it was revealed that fundraising efforts across the country had taken the fund to £125,000.
After his meeting with the Patersons, Mr Salmond said: “It was great to see Eileidh running about and enjoying herself today, she’s your typical, happy toddler.
“It’s a heartwarming story in terms of the community support that has been shown for the family.
“I’m sure now everybody will be cheering Eileidh on as she goes off to the states.”
If the test results prove positive next week, the family will fly to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Michigan, USA, next Friday.
And although the appeal has crossed its threshold, fundraising efforts are continuing in case Eileidh needs additional treatment when she is abroad.
Tonight bands from across the north will take to the stage at the Ironworks in Inverness for a benefit concert in Eileidh’s honour.
The event, entitled A Song for Eileidh, begins at 7pm and will feature eight musical acts.