Fundraiser launched to help Ramsgate toddler fighting for his life

Ronnie is fighting for his life

A Ramsgate two-year-old rushed to hospital on June 23 is in a critical condition and needs a heart transplant.

Doctors thought tiny Ronnie Ripley would not survive after he fell critically ill and had to be shocked with a defibrillator twice  after being blue-lighted to Margate’s QEQM.

Mum Nicole called the ambulance after her son turned blue.

The 25-year-old said: “Ronnie was in bed and woke up crying. I brought him downstairs and he started going blue and stiff so I called the ambulance. They blue-lighted him to Margate hospital.

“They tried to stabilise him but were struggling so they called the specialist team in London . He was not stable enough to be moved so they had to come to him. They had already shocked his body twice and were worried in case they moved him and needed to do it again.

“The doctors told us to prepare for the worst and that they did not think he would make it to London but my baby did.”

Ronnie was taken to St Mary’s Hospital and put in an induced comma but needed to be moved to heart and lung specialist hospital, the Royal Brompton.

Following tests Ronnie was diagnosed with rare heart disease restrictive cardiomyopathy which is where the walls of the main heart chambers become stiff and rigid and cannot relax properly after contracting. This means the heart cannot fill up properly with blood.

The toddler was initially thought to be making progress and was taken off the ventilator but his heart rate accelerated and he had to be sedated once more.

The little one has also suffered four infections and now mum Nicole has been told he has a ruptured bowel and may need emergency surgery.

Nicole said: “Ronnie is in critical condition, he has pressure on his heart and his lung is wet so until the pressure comes down the doctors cannot do the tests they need to do for him to be eligible for a heart transplant. They say this is the only option but because of the pressure it is impossible right now .

“The hospital is treating the infections and hoping they clear up so they can carry out the tests they need to do. It is terrifying, I’m so scared.

“I lost my sister last September, I can’t lose my baby boy, he is my life and my only child.”

Ronnie’s nan Lisa said her grandson is a loving, happy little boy.

She said: “He likes Paw Patrol and Shark Dog. He loves to sing and he is a very loving, gentle little boy who is never sad. He is always a happy Nanny’s boy and I love him very much.”

Nicole has been told by doctors that Ronnie may face many more months in hospital.

She said: “Ronnie is such a loving, clever boy. He loves his family and always wants his mum mum as he would say.

“His favourite toy is his Moana microphone and he loves Frozen and we sing the songs of it. I just cannot wait to hear his voice and give him a cuddle. My heart is breaking.”

To help with the costs of staying in London, and for any items Ronnie might need, family friend Lucinda Rose has set up a Gofundme.

Lucinda said: “I just want to take some of the stress away from them by raising some funds as they are having to stay in accommodation up the road from the hospital and everything is so expensive. None of us expect to be in this position but we can make a difference

“The funds will be used for living expenses for his mum while she stays in London as well as costs while at the hospital with Ronnie and anything Ronnie may need throughout recovery and this traumatic time of his life.”

Find the Gofundme page here