Heartbreaking news was shared onto popular Facebook forum The Salott tonight as it was announced that Malta’s favourite young triathlete and inspiring hero Jake Vella had been urgently rushed to hospital.
The nine-year-old boy reportedly found difficulties breathing and wasn’t able to communicate with the people around him, and was rushed to Mater Dei’s Intensive Therapy Unit earlier this evening. A Facebook post asking for people to pray for the young boy appeared just after 9pm, and within minutes racked up over a thousand reactions and hundreds of people saying the young hero would be in their prayers tonight.
Jake Vella battles one of the rarest conditions in the world, ROHHAD NET, which he shares with only about 75 people in the whole world. Due to his condition, Jake keeps gaining weight no matter how much he exercises or diets, and even though he leads one of the healthiest and most active lives ever, his condition will only deteriorate as he gets older. In fact, no one with ROHHAD has ever lived past the age of 20.
Two years ago, Jake’s went viral worldwide, and the then six-year-old boy had won the hearts of millions around the world. Just last month, his lifelong dream became a reality when he met his heroes the Brownlee Brothers.
The Brownlees are twin brother triathletes who together hold a number of Olympic and World Championship titles. Unfortunately, Jake cannot travel because of his condition, and because of this and the brothers’ busy schedule, the only meeting they could arrange was a Skype conversation last year.
26 days ago, though, the brothers had flown to Malta to take part in the Super League triathlon, but made a pit stop to finally meet their own hero – Jake.