A dad has paid a heartfelt thank you to Colne residents for their support after a family retreat to Turkey turned into “a nightmare”.
Paul Whitemore and his wife Julie were 10 days into their holiday when their disabled son Kris contracted pneumonia.
The 35-year-old, who suffered a stroke when he was a baby and who has problems with speech and swallowing, was whisked off to a hospital in Antalya - about half an hour away from the trio’s hotel.
The 14-day getaway soon turned into 21-days, and after Kris falling ill Mr and Mrs Whitemore spent every night sleeping by his bedside.
Now, safely back in the UK and with Kris recovering, Mr Whitemore has praised hospital staff for their efficiency and help, and has thanked everybody back in his home town for their words of encouragement during such a difficult time.
The 62-year-old, who runs North Valley Chippy, said: “It was so hard being in a foreign country and not speaking the language, but the medical services were fabulous.
“With Kris being disabled we can’t leave him on his own, so we had to move out of the hotel and move into the hospital. It was horrendous at the time.
“I posted on Facebook letting people know we wouldn’t be back but that we hadn’t won the lottery and were staying in Turkey, and the response I got was heart-rending and so helpful to us. It was really nice knowing people care.
“I can’t believe how lovely people were and we spent time reading the comments to Kris - it really cheered him up.
“It was a fabulous holiday to start off with, but it turned into a nightmare.”
Since returning to Colne, Kris has been building his strength back up, and is said to be “better in himself”.