A fundraiser has been launched to help pay for medical treatment for the former manager of Margate’s Black Cat Club, Keith Roberts, who is fighting for his life in a Crete hospital.
The 54-year-old had travelled to Greece with partner Nicki Plumb to see his mum Wendy after discovering she is suffering the onset of dementia.
Keith, who co-ran the club in Fort Hill with Eli Thompson from Olbys, forgot to take out travel insurance in his rush to get to his mum but then fell very ill just a couple of days into the visit.
At first it was suspected he had suffered a stroke but this has since been ruled this out. The doctors have been unable to give a firm diagnosis but believe it’s something neurological. Keith is now in Intensive care and fighting for his life.
His sister Angela, who has set up the fundraiser, said: “Mum has the beginnings of dementia and Keith went out with his partner to visit, it was not really a holiday as such and he forgot to sort out holiday insurance.
“He suffered what they thought was a stroke. This has now been ruled out but he has some neurological problem they just can’t identify.
“I am paying £600 tomorrow so more tests can be done. He’s currently in Intensive care in Crete, prior to that he was on a ward where they have no nursing care so all that was done 24/7 was by his partner Nicki.
“I am now in Crete to support them but we are in desperate need of help. While we appreciate he should have got travel insurance, when you are visiting family it is easy to forget.
“I have worked for the NHS for almost 31 years, I have worked in a military hospital and have never seen anything so awful as the conditions he is in now, although ITU is clean.
“We just need some money to help with nursing care once he is well enough to go to the wards. At approximately 70 euros a shift, three shifts a day, it’s going to be incredibly hard, and this is even with an European Health Insurance Card.
“Mum isn’t aware of what’s happening. It’s been a very distressing few months and now this.”
Angela said the family are desperate to get Keith well enough to arrange an air ambulance to bring him back to the UK.
She added: “We are desperate to get him back so we can have more family around to support him and each other.”
The family think the costs will come to some £30,000. Sharon and Ray Summers, from The Northern Belle pub, and DJ John Cripps are arranging an event to try and help raise some of the cash.