A 34-year-old woman who lost two siblings and her dad to diabetes is fundraising to pay for her own funeral – after being told she too will die from the same disease.
Tragic Suzanne Shipley was still mourning the recent loss of her sister Claire in October when she was given the heartbreaking news that she had just weeks to live.
Suzanne’s fight to keep going has astounded doctors but she is now being provided with end of life care at home from her devastated mum Rose and older sister Laura.
With Rose still paying for Claire’s funeral, the family have made a desperate appeal for financial help, at a time when money “should be last thing on their minds”.
In just three days their crowdfunding page has accumulated £8,000 and Suzanne, in a message posted on social media, has since thanked people for their generosity.
She said that despite being “terrified of dying and leaving behind those I love” the donations to help her family afterwards have “eased my mind so much”.
Suzanne, a type 1 diabetic, requires kidney dialysis four times a week and in 2017 she had her lower leg amputated after contracting sepsis.
She then developed neuropathy and retinopathy, issues relating to her nerves, and had a kidney transplant donated from her mum Rose.
Last month, following a check up, doctors found her kidneys were functioning at only 8% and gave her the earth-shattering news no further treatment could be carried out.
Staff gave Suzanne only two weeks to live but she has defied the odds to live an additional fortnight, although she isn’t expected to have long left.
As well as losing Claire to diabetes, Suzanne also lost her dad, Graham, and her brother, Stephen, to the same disease.
Her friend Jo Tocher, 41, set up the fundraising page on crowdfunding site GoFundMe to pay for the funeral and support Rose afterwards.
She said: “I was heartbroken when I heard about how worried Suzanne was about funeral costs – it’s the last thing she should be worrying about.
“Rose and Laura haven’t worked for a while because they have been caring for Claire and Suzanne, so I thought I would do what I can to help.
“The money raised will pay for Suzanne’s funeral and what’s left will go to Rose and Laura.
“It’s impossible to even imagine what they have been through, it’s not something she will ever get over but hopefully some financial support will help a bit.
“They can use the money to go on holiday or something, they deserve that after all the pain they have gone through over the years.”
Mum-of-four Jo described the Shipley family as “the strongest group of people I know.”
“They are the nicest people in the world, they would do anything for anyone and their attitude throughout all this has been unbelievable,” she said.
“What they have been through is heartbreaking.”
Donate to the family here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/suzanne-shipley