Friends to raise funds for man left blind after cancer surgery

Friends are rallying round to raise funds for a former Widdrington man who has been left blind as a result of complications after major surgery.

Monday, 2nd March 2020, 11:06 am
Kevin Stanbury

Kevin Stanbury suffered numerous injuries last summer when he was involved in a collision with a tractor whilst out training on his bike for a charity triathlon.

Doctors found out that the father-of-two had lung cancer whilst investigating those injuries, which included a punctured lung.

He had to heal from those injuries prior to any operation to remove the cancer so did not go in for surgery until early November.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

However, there were complications with internal bleeding which led to blood clots and Kevin suffered a cardiac arrest.

Medics resuscitated him and he underwent heart bypass surgery and was placed in an induced coma where he suffered two major strokes.

After five weeks he came out of the coma but was blind.

“That wasn’t in our expectations at all,” said his brother-in-law Craig Neal. “We knew he had a series of strokes while in a coma and were worried about brain damage. He’s fine cognitively but has no sight at all.”

Kevin, a bricklayer who now lives at Ballymahon, near Athlone, in the Republic of Ireland, must now build his strength up before further surgery or chemotherapy.

His friends on both sides of the Irish Sea are fund-raising to help the ease the financial worry.

In Ashington, singer Mark Evans has lined up several local bands to play at the Northern Social Club on April 19.

“Kevin’s a keen guitarist and was in a number of North East bands,” said Craig, from Ashington. “No-one knew what he went through for quite a long time but as soon as they found out they wanted to do something.”

Before moving to Germany for work in the mid-1990s, and then on to Ireland, the Leeds United fan also played for a number of local football teams including Lynemouth and Ellington.His friends in Ireland are doing a fund-raising cycle on March 28 and hope to raise over £4,000. Donations can be made through a go fund me page at