'Isla Caton's claret and blue army!': Campaign to get West Ham fans singing in support of young Hornchurch cancer sufferer
PUBLISHED: 18:00 29 January 2019
A social media campaign is calling for West Ham fans to turn the ninth minute of the club's home game against Liverpool on Monday into a celebration of Isla Caton's bravery in her fight against cancer.
Four-year-old Isla, from Hornchurch, was diagnosed with stage four neuroblastoma in March 2017, and on Monday (January 28), began a pioneering treatment known as ICE – Ifosfamide, carboplatin, and etoposide – while out in Barcelona with her family, who are originally from Stratford.
Isla will be the first person in the world to undergo this specific treatment.
To honour her amazing spirit, the team behind Isla’s Fight have been raising money at every West Hame game at the London Stadium for the past 18 months - raising on average around £2,000 per game.
But for the Irons’ home tie against Liverpool on Monday, February 4, to mark Isla’s history-making ICE treatment, the team are calling on West Ham fans to go one step further, and spend the ninth minute chanting “Isla Caton’s claret and blue army”.
A Team Isla spokesman said: “If this treatment is successful, Isla’s bravery could go on to save the lives of thousands of children around the world.
“If we can get 60,000 people singing Isla’s name then it will mean so much to this family, and it will send a message that everyone at West Ham is right behind her.”
A statement released on the Isla Caton’s Fight Against Neuroblastoma Facebook page on Sunday, before the first of her treatments, read: “Isla will be the first person in the world to ever have this done.
“It will consist of her being hooked up to a drip for five days solid.
“ICE is a much stronger chemotherapy than the one she’s been having and also includes antibody infusions.
“I beg you all to please send your love, well wishes and thoughts out to Isla and her family over in Barcelona so they know we’re thinking of them.
“Isla’s mummy will be staying in with her for the five days and we just want you and Michael [Isla’s dad] to know our thoughts are with you and we’re sending all our love and well wishes to your little princess.
“No one fights alone.”
In a video statement released on Team Isla’s Facebook and Twitter pages, Hammers captain Mark Noble also sent his best wishes to the brave young girl.
He said: “Hello Isla, be strong darling.
“We’re all thinking of you at West Ham. I know you’re having a new treatment so good luck to you darling.
“We all love you.”