Meet the Sheffield United season ticket-holder getting a Sheffield Wednesday tattoo for charity

Chris Sheldon
Chris Sheldon
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A die-hard Sheffield United fan will make the ultimate footballing sacrifice when he gets a Sheffield Wednesday tattoo -  all in the name of charity.

Blades season ticket-holder Chris Sheldon, 24, decided to raise money for the family of Gracie Rae Philbin after she was diagnosed with stage 4 Neuroblastoma.

Gracie Rae - Picture: Facebook

Gracie Rae - Picture: Facebook

The youngster's grandparents John and Suanne decided to organise a bake sale at Royal Mail, where Chirs works, to raise money for her treatment.

However, Chris decided to go one better and started drawing up a list of escalating Sheffield Wednesday based dares, culminating in him getting an Owls tattoo if they raise £1000.

He said: "It started off by us having a dress down Monday. We were all wearing blue, like Sheffield Wednesday, because that's her favourite colour.

"Then we joked that if I could raise £100 then I would wear a Wednesday shirt and it just kept escalating. I never thought we would get this much.

"We have raised the £1000 for the tattoo in just under a week which is incredible. I'm really not looking forward to it and my dad is not best pleased.

"I've already got a couple on my arm so I'm going to try and blend them in. I'm actually booked into get a Sheffield United tattoo next month so I'm not sure what to do.

"My friends think it's absolutely hilarious. I play football in Rotherham and when they found out what I was doing they were all chucking money into the charity bucket."

Gracie, who lives in South Africa with her mum and dad Kate and Ian, had made numerous trips to her GP after suffering with high temperatures and tiredness.

Following an ultra sound, doctors found a mass in her abdomen before a series of tests confirmed that she had stage 4 neuroblastoma.

Devastatingly, Gracie's diagnosis is terminal and doctors have warned that, without treatment, she would only have weeks to live.

However, her parents have decided to proceed with chemotherapy treatment which, doctors believe, will extend her life by 12 months.

The family have now managed to raise over £4,500 for treatment and to take Gracie on the trip of a lifetime to Disneyland.

Charlotte Moore, from Leeds, launched the JustGiving page and said that the family would love to take her on an incredible holiday.

She said: "To make magical memories ones that the family will never forget. The aim of this page it too raise as much money as possible so that we can fly Kate, Ian, Gracie and older sister Ella from South Africa to Paris.

"Please help by donating anything thing you can. Even if it's just a pound every pound will help."

Chris said he will be wearing his Sheffield Wednesday kit to work on Monday and added that he will be booking his new tattoo shortly.

He said: "I'm going to get the Sheffield Wednesday owl with the initials SWFC underneath. I'll probably have it done on a Wednesday as well, just for good measure."

Anyone wishing to donate to Chris van visit philbinsfundraiser@gmail.com and pay by PayPal. Or to donate to the Gracie's JustGiving page, visit https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/gracierae