The effect little Lleyton Giles has on the Wests Tigers players was evident again last week.
The courageous little boy from Mt Druitt who has won over the hearts of all at Wests Tigers turned six last Wednesday. It was a special day too - he turned six with twin brother Connor and it was the first time he celebrated his birthday out of hospital.
Diagnosed with a terminal stomach condition last July, this birthday was always going to be special in more ways than one.
Devoted and loving parents Belinda Hanson and Wes Giles arranged for their beautiful family and a few close friends to attend the birthday party at the one place Lleyton really wanted to go - none other than LeichhaTiger - the Leichhardt Restaurant owned by Wests Tigers Captain Robbie Farah.
Robbie was more than happy to play host for this private function. In between delivering huge servings of pasta and pizza, Robbie’s shoulders seem to become a second home to his little mate Lleyton and his friends.
To add to the night, Benji Marshall, Robert Lui and Aaron Woods made a surprise visit to enjoy dinner with not only the family but a young boy who Benji describes as a ‘little brother’. The bond between Lleyton and Benji is incredibly strong.
That’s what Lleyton has become to these hardened NRL players. He is a ray of light when times are dark. His carefree attitude to life and glowing smile puts rugby league into perspective.
As part of their birthday present, Wests Tigers presented Lleyton and Connor with their own number ‘6’ jerseys as well as giving them the opportunity to lead the team out onto the field against the Broncos last Friday night at the SFS. It was one of Lleyton’s wishes…to be able to run the team out with Connor and his big brother Dennis - himself a talented young league player.
Following the game, Lleyton headed inside the dressing room. Within minutes, the nature of the loss seemed insignificant. Win or lose, Lleyton has taught his league heroes there is more to life than the two competition points.
Source: Wests Tigers (by Wayne Cousins)