Deep sadness as brave Donegal toddler passes away

Caolan Melaugh had been diagnosed with a rare and aggressive childhood cancer when he was just 10 weeks old.

Matt Britton


Matt Britton


Deep sadness as brave Donegal toddler passes away

Caolan and his parents, Gerard and Stacey, in the Abbey Hotel just after Christmas.

There was widespread sadness throughout Donegal and beyond following the news yesterday that the little red-haired toddler from Killygordon, Caolan Melaugh, had passed away.

The two-year-old died in at home on Thursday afternoon, in the company of his loving parents, Gerard and Stacey, and his little brother, Eoghan.

Caolan endured a battle with stage 4 high-risk neuroblastoma, a rare and aggressive childhood cancer, since he was just 10 weeks old. Over the last two years friends of the family organised countless fundraisers to help provide the necessary treatment which included chemotherapy, surgery, stem cell transplant, radiotherapy and six months of immunotherapy.

Caolan was enrolled on a preventative trial Michigan last summer. But while in America for a trial in September, he suffered a relapse. After suffering a seizure, Caolan had two life-saving brain surgeries in Michigan. In April, Caolan had an emergency trip to Temple Street Children’s Hospital where he had fluid removed from his brain, and in May the family visited Medjugorje.

In a statement issued yesterday afternoon, his family said, “Sorry for the lack of updates. We were to busy enjoying our time with Caolan.

“Unfortunately things took a very bad turn, and today poor Caolan left this cruel world, he passed away peacefully, surrounded by all our family.”

They said, “We are totally heartbroken but so proud of our wee man.”

“Thank you for all the support and we please ask everyone to respect our privacy at this hard time. Sleep tight darling, free from pain and suffering from now on.”