Community rallies so four-year-old with brain cancer can attend parents' wedding

Asia-Lee Taitoko
Asia-Lee Taitoko has aggressive brain cancer. Photo credit: Supplied / Nikki Murray

A King Country community is pulling together so a four-year-old with brain cancer can walk down the aisle at her parents' wedding. 

Asia-Lee Taitoko was diagnosed in April with a high grade malignant stage four glioblastoma, also known as Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM).

One of the most aggressive forms of cancer, it has now spread throughout her body despite surgery to remove 80 percent of the tumour, radiation and chemotherapy treatment. 

"They have nothing more to offer now, no more treatment or anything and they gave us weeks for her to live," her mother Nikki Murray told Newshub. 

The family are now living day by day after receiving the news a week ago that has left their world shattered. 

Asia-Lee in Starship Hospital after surgery.
Asia-Lee in Starship Hospital after surgery. Photo credit: Supplied / Nikki Murray

Nikki and Dallas Taitoko, both 22, were set to marry in November after being engaged for two years and together for seven years. 

But the local community of Piopio is banding together, donating everything possible so so the couple can get married on Saturday and Asia-Lee can be there. 

"It was just something for us to look forward to, instead of just dwelling on how many weeks we have left with her," Nikki says.

The four-year-old can't wait to walk down the aisle with her Mum and Dad on Saturday. 

With two dresses to wear, Asia-Lee is calling it "her day". 

"It's not going to be about me and him, it's more so going to be about her now, her being there with us," Nikki says. 

"It is going to be so special, she's always wanted to wear a wedding dress."

Melanie Simpson, Nikki's employer at The Fat Pigeon Cafe, coordinated all the donations, saying the least she can do is give the family a special memory. 

"We wanted them to share it with Asia while they have that time, because we don't know how much time Asia's got."

Nikki and Asia-Lee.
Nikki and Asia-Lee. Photo credit: Supplied / Nikki Murray

Melanie also owns The Night Owl, where the wedding and reception will be hosted with all staff giving their time freely. 

Food, hair and make-up, flowers, the celebrant, even the wedding dress and bridal party outfits have all come from the community's generosity.

"We live in a community where that's what we're a part of, that's what we do, isn't it? We all pull together and we all help and to be able to do something for them is just so special, it really is," Melanie says. 

Nikki says their family doesn't know how to begin to say thank you for all the support. 

"There's not any words to describe what they've done for us, just above and beyond for me and my family."

Around 150 family and friends are expected to be there for the family's special day. 

Turning five in December but running out of time, Asia-Lee will also get to celebrate her birthday early with a Disney themed bash in a few weeks. 

"I just want people to celebrate her and the life she has." 

Coming to terms with the reality their daughter will be gone soon, Nikki says they are all still hoping for a miracle. 

"I can't even imagine life without her," she says.

"We've accepted it and we're still going to have faith and hope that she's going to live till she's 21...but we do realise this is happening to her and she is going to go earlier than we want her to."

Newshub.

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