A fundraising bid to help a dad suffering from an aggressive form of multiple sclerosis has topped £4,500.
Four years ago sporty father-of-five Eric Thomson was given the devastating diagnosis of Primary Progressive MS – a form which has no treatment in this country.
Last month his family launched a £30,000 fundraising campaign to send Eric to Mexico to undergo a haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), which offers the possibility of slowing – if not stopping – the progression of his condition, and improve mobility.
So far a Just Giving Page has raised £4,502, and a recent fundraising race night raised £1,206.
“We are holding our next event on Thursday at 7pm at The Raglan, which is an evening with spiritualist Peter Crawford,” said fundraiser and family friend Angela Cowe.
“He is based in Hartlepool and has quite a big following, so it should be a good show.
“Eric is doing really well at the minute – he is quite upbeat and we are on target for fundraising. We would like to raise another £600 by Christmas.”
Eric is scheduled to have the operation in 2017 at the Riaz Clinic in Mexico but could also receive treatment in Russia.
This pioneering treatment comes at a cost of £30,000, which Mr Thomson needs to raise in just 12 to 18 months before his condition can progress further.
The former Camerons Brewery worker of Jowitt Road, was just 44 when he was diagnosed in July 2011.
Now 49, he has seen his whole life change as symptoms progress.
A keen football player and coach for Pools Youth Team, he even played at Wembley in a team made up of Camerons staff in 2010.
But the once-active family man had to give up the hobbies he loved as the illness took its hold.
Doctors told the family there was nothing they could do for treatment, leaving the family with no choice but to continue day-to-day life the best they can.
Upcoming events include a Halloween party at the Cosmopolitan on October 30; a fun run at Seaton Front on October 31 and a Christmas fair on November 21 at the Old Boys Rugby Club.
For information on charity events, visit: HSCT fundraising for Eric Thompson on Facebook. To donate visit the JustGiving page HERE.