George takes first steps into classroom

The youngster mastered the feat after his life-changing operation six weeks ago.

Cerebral palsy sufferer George Palmer has walked into his classroom at school for the first time following a life-changing operation six weeks ago.

The five-year-old from Braunton underwent a three-hour selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) procedure at St Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri.

The surgery, which involves cutting away the nerve endings which don’t work properly, was paid for by a fundraising appeal launched by George’s parents, Nicki and Gary.

Now back at home, George is undergoing an hour of therapy six days a week and the results are already starting to show.

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Nicki told the Gazette on Monday: “This morning George has walked into his classroom at school for the first time.

“He has never walked outside or on a slight incline so this was fab to see; very slow steps but his class mates and teachers loved seeing him take steps and George was so proud of himself.”

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Nicki has set George and his therapist two ultimate goals she dreams of coming true.

“Before the school breaks up next summer, I want be able to walk George to school.

“And next summer, Gary and I would love to walk him on the beach, holding each hand and dipping his toes in the water.

“You see other parents doing it, and we live so close to the sea but we have never been able to take him to the beach – it’s heartbreaking.”

George has also received a generous donation of a treadmill from Barnstaple Round Table, with a specially fitted frame made by Barnstaple charity Remap, to aid his therapy.

Now the Palmers are looking forward to a quiet family Christmas at home.

“We just want to say thank you to the Gazette and to everybody who has donated and changed George’s life.

“Everything from now on will just be a huge bonus.”

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