19th Sep, 2018

Heartbroken family appealing to public to help give them more time together

A HEARTBROKEN family is appealing for help to allow them to spend a little more precious time together.

John Turner from Stratford has been fighting cancer for nearly ten years, but now having exhausted every option his family is crowd-funding to pay for drugs which could give him more time with them.

Doctors first discovered melanoma on John’s back in 2009 and despite being removed, the cancer cells have repeatedly shown up in various places.

Although the 38-year-old has had parts of his lungs removed, and tried drugs which cleared him from cancer for around two years, it has returned to his liver and bowel.

Now the dad-of-two – a former project leader at Jaguar Land Rover in Coventry – is pinning his hopes on a different drug, but this time the trial will not be covered by the NHS.

The new drug known as Pembrolizumab, costs around £1,250 per week. John sold his kit car to pay for the first course he received at the cancer unit at Stratford Hospital.

In just a matter of days, donations have risen to over £23,000 – around a third of the family’s £69,000 target.

Among those supporting John is his friend Michelle Dowler who he met when setting up an off-shoot of Stratford environmental group Rubbish Friends, in Tiddington.

Michelle said: “John was keen to give his time to the local community to improve our environment for all to enjoy.

“He is a super, gentle, caring guy who deserves a chance to battle this illness to be with those he loves the most, his gorgeous family, his wife Samantha and children, Jake and Emily.”

His son Jake was among those to contribute to the fund-raising with £50 his dad had given him to spend on ‘something special’. In a heartfelt message the ten-year-old said he had chosen his dad’s crowdfunding campaign because it was ‘very special’.

John’s mum Jayne Berks, who set up the ‘just giving’ page, said: “He has no other option and is in so much pain at the moment.

“John is so desperate to spend more time with his wife and children and it breaks my heart to see this happening to my son.”

Visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/jayne-berks-1 to help the family.

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