Tributes flow for Christchurch boy who died after eight-year battle with cancer


Lachie Sutherland died at the Nurse Maude Hospice in Christchurch on Tuesday. He is pictured here in 2013.

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Lachie Sutherland died at the Nurse Maude Hospice in Christchurch on Tuesday. He is pictured here in 2013.

Hundreds of tributes have emerged online for a young Christchurch boy who died of cancer after an eight-year battle.

Lachie Sutherland was diagnosed with neuroblastoma cancer – an aggressive form of childhood extra-cranial cancer – in January 2012, aged 4.

His father, Chris Sutherland, died from metastatic melanoma in 2013, after being diagnosed a month earlier.

Lachie spent hundreds of nights in Christchurch and Sydney hospitals receiving chemotherapy and other treatments. A Givealittle page set up by the family said the treatment was “self-funded” and had cost about $80,000.

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According to the family’s Facebook page, TouchPauseEngage, Lachie died at the Nurse Maude Hospice in Christchurch on Tuesday.

Lachie's parents Chris Sutherland and Kelly Sharpe in 2013. Chris died later that year, also from cancer.

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Lachie’s parents Chris Sutherland and Kelly Sharpe in 2013. Chris died later that year, also from cancer.

“We are heartbroken for our loss but deeply relieved that Lachie is no longer suffering,” a post read.

“We were together only a little while, and we believed our love would last a thousand years.”

One Facebook tribute read: “Lachie is a child out of the hundreds I’ve taught over the years that I always remember and think of often. His laugh and his grin was like no other.”

Another said: “Such a devastating loss. This world has lost the most amazing kid, so unfair. I am so deeply sorry Kelly! I can’t even begin to even imagine how you are all feeling. Rest easy Lachie you amazingly incredible soul.”

Lachie Sutherland and father pictured in 2013.

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Lachie Sutherland and father pictured in 2013.

The Givealittle page said the family had “worked hard to heal and rebuild” following Chris Sutherland’s death but that was “short-lived” after Lachie “relapsed” just a month later.

He then spent the past five months undergoing eight rounds of chemotherapy, seven cycles of immunotherapy and radiation.