Just a week after North Shore Rescue made a public plea for donations to help one of its volunteers who is battling cancer, organizers say they’ve beaten their goal by half.
Curtis Jones says the “rescue the rescuer” fund has netted nearly $90,000 to cover the medical costs for helicopter medic Jay Piggot.
“I have to say, the financial side is just terrific and mindblowing. But the fact that he has the community at his back, he has that greater sense of support has been amazing for him.”
Nearly 900 people have donated, helping the fund surpass it’s initial goal of $60,000.
Piggot was recently diagnosed with a rare form of cancer in the area around his liver.
A regular volunteer with the team, he works as an ambulance paramedic but because he is not technically a full time employee, he doesn’t qualify for extended medical coverage.
That prompted the team to reach out for help. But Jones says while they’re thrilled about the money coming in, they’ve been getting a different kind of support that has helped Piggot face the disease with confidence.
“Beyond the cash, a lot of survival stories coming through the website. People just talking about how they had survived similar cancers and in fact had people say they’d survived the same cancer. A lot of hope for Jay has been passed on.”
He says while donations have surpassed the initial target, they expect the money will all be needed, as the costs of Piggot’s care keep mounting.
“I don’t think we had thought ahead to him having to potentially travel for treatement or the fact that his wife has to take time off from work to care for their two children, one of whom has autism.”
Jones says they plan to keep the campaign open for anyone that wishes to donate or offer their support.