Sister so proud of drumming brother who lost fingers to meningitis
A PROUD sister is singing the praises of a musician who has fought back after losing his fingers to meningitis.
Mel Summers says her brother Troy Hutchinson is an "inspiration to others" who has followed his dreams, despite a life-changing illness.
In 2008, Troy, who is now 20, was treated in hospital with meningococcal meningitis and septicaemia, the blood poisoning form of the disease.
He lost fingers on his left hand and was left with a skin disfigurement.
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With support from his family and friends, he has met his goal of joining a band, and is now the drummer of local group Just Mammals.
He said: "I never let meningitis take over me emotionally, even though it did physically. I kept an upbeat attitude and I was determined to carry on as normal.
"I have always loved music and played the drums before.
"I first decided to pick up my drum sticks again on Mother's Day in 2009, but it was difficult with only part of my thumb and a stumped index finger left."
For the past year, Troy, from Cleethorpes, has played live gigs across the country.
"I have put meningitis behind me now and I am really loving life again," he said.
"The band is great, but I do get looks and comments from people at the end of shows as to how I cope.
"I have just got use to gripping the drum sticks with what I have remaining on my left hand.
"If you have the determination to do something then it can be achieved. I am lucky to have survived the disease."
Mel, also from Cleethorpes, cannot hide her pride and is delighted with his success.
She said: "He has been so brave throughout everything and just got on with everyday life.
"To lose his fingers was devastating at the time, but Troy just adapted to the changes.
"We are all so proud of what he has achieved and hopefully he will inspire others.
Follow Just Mammals on Twitter at @JustMammals