Fighting back the tears, a loving daughter has spoken of her shock as she and her family reached their £12,000 target to “Bring Doreen Home”.
The relatives of former Burnley and Pendle nurse Doreen Blackburn have been left overwhelmed by community support since sharing their heartbreaking family story with East Lancashire Newspapers.
We reported how Mrs Blackburn (78) had suffered two major strokes in Portugal, but due to her need for medical assistance and to fly at a low altitude it would cost £12,000 to get her back to England.
Now, thanks to individual donations and diverse range of fund-raisers, Mrs Blackburn’s family have managed to reach their goal in just one month. They have now got a flat ready in Colne for when Doreen’s husband Maurice gets home, and they are in discussions with Airedale Hospital for Mrs Blackburn.
Doreen’s daughter Sharon Borrowdale (53), of Grassington Drive, Burnley, said: “We are absolutely taken aback - I just can’t stop crying.
“I have spoken to my dad and I told him all about what has been going on, and he cannot believe it either.
“It means the absolute world that she’s coming back. It means we can get her home, and look after her.
“As a family, we just can’t thank everybody who has helped us enough.”
Money has come from as far as Australia and Germany, after our article was read online, and a variety of fund-raisers have been held by individuals and businesses touched by the family’s campaign.
These include a full weekend of activities at the Morris Dancers, in Colne, fund-raising at Rolls-Royce, in Barnoldswick, and a bake sale at the Burnley Express office in Bull Street.
Mrs Borrowdale added: “I am absolutely stunned. Everybody has rallied around for us, and shown such community support.”
And on their Facebook page, the family added: “All the family would like to sincerely thank each and every one of you for your donations and support, the kindness shown from strangers, the community spirit and support at fundraising events, the letters and messages of support and well wishes have touched our hearts.”