A desperate family has released this picture of a seriously ill British man in a bid to raise funds for lifesaving treatment.
Ronnie Lord is dangerously emaciated at Our Lady of Lourdes International Medical Centre in Olongapo City after doctors found tumours in his mouth and throat.
According to his British family, Mr Lord had been too proud to ask for help until his Filipina wife, Rebecca, and some friends took the initiative.
The 59-year-old took early retirement in the Philippines with his first wife about 15 years ago. After she died of a stroke, he then went on to marry Rebecca, with whom he has a nine-year-old daughter, Shanieka.
Mr Lord initially dismissed his symptoms as nothing more than a sore throat. However, his condition went rapidly downhill, prompting Rebecca and friends to launch a JustGiving campaign to raise funds for life-saving treatment.
Doctors say Mr Lord needs scans and specialist cancer care to keep him alive before there is any chance he can be moved back to the UK.
A crowdfunding appeal to raise £15,000 for hospital treatment and medication has already gathered more than £7,000.
Ronnie’s younger sister Karen, 57, said she was horrified to see her brother’s deteriorated state.
She told Mirror Online: “If I would have known about it earlier it wouldn’t have progressed the way it did but Ronnie never told me.
“I spoke to him about seven months ago and he mentioned he had a sore throat but that was it.
“I woke up to that picture last week and I can’t describe how I felt. It’s so sad, I knew I just needed to do everything possible to help him. It’s absolutely shocking.
“Ronnie didn’t even know the picture had been sent, his wife sent it out of desperation.
“He is a very proud and stubborn man and obviously didn’t want people to know he needed money.”
Family friend Alana Altham, who helped Rebecca set up the fund-raising appeal, said: “Ronnie has told family that they have ran out of money now for any further medical treatment.
“Family and friends are raising money to get Ronnie all the medical tests and treatments he needs in the Philippines so that he can get fit enough to come back home to the Ribble Valley where he was born, raised and worked.”
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