A CORK boy who was not expected to survive as a baby has received more than 1,500 birthday cards from around the world to mark his 10th birthday.
Daniel O'Sullivan from The Meadows in Hollyhill had a birthday celebration to remember today.
In recent weeks, his mother Deirdre made an appeal for birthday cards for her son, because her original plans for a birthday party had to be abandoned because Covid-19 restrictions meant Daniel was forced to cocoon.
His birthday comes just three months after he underwent surgery on one of his lungs.
He is now waiting on a double lung transplant.
A few days after he was born, he developed a rare form of the Adenovirus and had to be flown to Switzerald for specialised treatment.
The virus can cause severe respiratory infections that can lead to death.
Deirdre's appeal was picked up across Ireland and right around the world, resulting in cards arriving from all over the country in recent days, as well as from as far away as Germany, Switzerland, Brazil and the US.
Today, 275 motorbikes gathered in Daniel's estate to deliver a bag of up to 150 birthday cards, much to his amazement and joy.
Deirdre said: "It has been amazing. I cannot believe the generosity of people.
"He was overwhelmed."
She said the family regularly went out on dirt bikes at weekends and believes that is how Daniel's story caught the imagination of the biker community.
"He loves bikes," she said.
Daniel's lung collapsed in early March and he ended up having surgery in Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children in Crumlin to remove part of a lung, after a number of other procedures first.
He currently needs two litres of oxygen a day.
In recent days, results of scans have come through from Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital which Deirdre says have been of some concern — he has not shown improvement since his surgery in Crumlin.
Daniel's family is staying positive and hope he will improve in the coming months.
For now, they are focused on celebrating his landmark birthday, and family members gathered at Daniel's home yesterday to mark the occasion.
On Wednesday, Daniel and his family plan to go out for the day, while they are also looking forward to an afternoon tea donated by Vienna Woods Hotel.
Deirdre said the Cork International Hotel also responded to the birthday card appeal by gifting Daniel a lunch.
"People have been so generous."