Hope for Co Antrim man given months to live as generous donors raise £180,000 for treatment
The wife of a man who has been given just three months to live said last night they are overwhelmed by the public support for his battle against brain cancer.
In just two days, generous friends and strangers have raised almost £180,000 of the £205,000 target to fund pioneering surgery that could prolong his life.
Co Antrim couple, Natasha and Kevin Carey, are in a race against time after he was diagnosed with glioblastoma (GBM) - an aggressive grade four terminal brain tumour.
"We are both very touched and really feel we aren't alone," Natasha said, speaking from London where Kevin is recovering from surgery.
After Kevin (35) was given the devastating news that he'd only months to live, the pair refused to give up and launched a campaign to raise money for specialist treatment.
The Portglenone man said he is "blown away and completely humbled" by the response and kindness expressed by the thousands of people who have rallied behind the campaign.
"We are overwhelmed with the support we are receiving back home. I think I'm still in shock and stunned at the huge surge of support. We really feel the love and strength everyone is sending Kevin and I, through messages of support, (Facebook) shares and generous donations."
In one of his greatest acts of defiance, Kevin underwent a risky, fully-awake brain operation where surgeons were able to remove 95% of the tumour. Their only hope now to prolong his life, and put an end to this horrific ordeal, is pioneering immunotherapy in London.
After the fundraising page raised almost £180,000 in two days, optician Natasha, who uses her maiden name Healey for work, said the support has helped Kevin in his battle.
She continued: "We have received so many stories from families in Northern Ireland who have very recently lost loved ones to a GBM brain tumour, all diagnosed within the same time frame as Kevin - it really is a monster of a cancer and the beautiful words of encouragement and fight from these poor suffering families is so inspirational."
Kevin is now out of hospital and resting in London before he returns for a review appointment on Monday. Speaking from their London hotel, Natasha added: "He's doing really well and is resting and following the doctor's orders and is very grateful.
"We can't believe the response - everyone has been so wonderful. I don't how he manages it, but every time he gets knocked down he gets back up."