A teenager who survived leukaemia as a child has been reconnected with the nurse who helped save her life after moving to university.
This week, Martin Dorey shared a photograph of his daughter, Maggie, on Twitter, writing that he had just dropped her off at university close to the hospital she was treated as a child.
“Dropped Maggie at [university] in Bristol today,” he wrote in a tweet.
“From her new room you can see the room at Bristol Children’s Hospital where, 17 years earlier, she spent six months fighting for her life against leukaemia. Tears of joy. Thank you NHS.”
The tweet caught the attention of nurse Charlotte Higby, who used to work as a children’s nurse in Bristol.
It was during this time that she looked after Maggie.
Replying to Dorey’s tweet, Higby said: “Wow – that gives me goosebumps! As a nurse who looked after Maggie all those years ago, I can’t tell you how much this post means. Have an amazing time Maggie!”
Shocked by her response, Dorey asked whether Higby was one of the nurses who had helped Maggie after she had an allergic reaction to chemotherapy as a child.
“Wow!! Me too. Thank you for your message… can I assume that you are one of the Charlotte/Charlie team who stepped in after an anaphylactic reaction to chemo,” he asked.
Higby confirmed that she was the same Charlotte, telling the father that she has “never forgotten that night”.
“Every year when I do my life support training and they ask ‘has anyone any experience of anaphylaxis’ I think of Maggie,” she said.
Dorey also revealed that the nurses’ actions had a lasting impact on his family, with Maggie’s younger sister named after Charlie.
“Until that moment she was going to be Lily. She’s a much better Charlie/Charlotte,” he said, sharing a picture of his daughters.
Higby said both she and nurse Charlie are “delighted” to see Maggie go to university.
“Nursing in that field often leaves you not quite sure how things turned out, so to see Maggie heading off to [university] is incredibly special,” she said.
The sweet exchange has since gone viral on Twitter, with Dorey’s original tweet garnering more than 120,000 likes.
One person touched by Dorey and Higby’s posts post commented: “This and Maggie’s nurse responding is absolutely amazing and so beautiful.”
Another user, a bereaved parent, said Maggie’s story had made them “so happy”.
“As the mother of a child that did not make it, 20 years ago, that makes me so happy for you,” they wrote.