Tom and Julie Crowther married in 2003!
It was like a perfect fairytale...so happy and excited to begin their new life together. They couldn't wait to be parents and start their family. After many miscarriages and heartaches Tom and Julie had their first daughter, Promise!
In August 2008, Promise was 6 months old and things were going well. Tom owned a construction company that had become well established and successful.
Out of nowhere, Tom started experiencing back pain that would not let up. His symptoms progressed quickly into pins and needles in his arms and legs, as well as intense pain throughout his entire body. Tom was diagnosed with a disease called CIDP
(chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy)
Which later became a wrong diagnosis.
Julie at this time was pregnant with their 2nd baby.
Tom's disease rapidly progressed until he had, lost all mobility in arms and legs, could not weight bare, and was confined to a wheelchair. Tom experienced significant weight loss and nerve pain but he never lost Hope!
Through it all he was always smiling :)
Surviving on very little funds from disability, their local church, family and friends was their only means.
In April 2009 after no real improvements, Tom experienced a Heart Attack due to complications of the disease.
Dr's explained that he would never walk again and started him on a type of Plasma treatments.
Tom never stopped fighting. He began walking with the assistance of canes and crutches, after a lot prayer and determination.
Still suffering from a great deal of pain, Tom's new Neurologist sent him to Vancouver for more extensive testing.
Tom was then properly diagnosed with a rare disease called POEMS (Polyneuropathy organomegaly, endocrinopathy, monoclonal gammopathy syndrome).
Roughly 10 years ago, anyone with this diagnosis would have been given only 5 years to live.
Thankfully Dr's discovered chemotherapy a viable treatment for the symptoms of this disease.
Tom and Julie had no choice but to move their family to Vancouver for what was about to be the most difficult journey.
Tom responded well to treatments and after months of hard work was able to come home.
Julie, gave birth to their 3rd daughter and continued doing at home daycare and creating wedding and birthday cakes for extra income.
Toms symptoms improved slowly, but he never gained full mobility of his legs and feet without the assistance of orthotics and other devices. The pain never fully goes away!
He was granted permanent disability and does small jobs for his church and friends to earn what he can.
As you can imagine the struggle financially has been devastating.
Dealing with the challenges of an older home, the upkeep and maintenance is very difficult. Just in the last year they experienced the hardship of a flood in their basement, the septic tank needed to be replaced, vehicle repairs and Hydro being cut off forcing them to live with friends/neighbours for a month.
Tom and Julie were recently denied income assistance benefits as they were selected for an audit causing everything including disability to freeze, essentially leaving them with Zero
income. Although now back in their own home, the struggle to make even minimum payments is nearly impossible. They are facing bankruptcy and the possibility of losing their home.
This family has shown their generosity in years past by always openeing their home to others and giving with such a pure heart.
This is an example of people who deserve a helping hand up and in return give back 10 fold, to friends, family and their community.
If you are able, please give what is in your heart and say a prayer for this Beautiful family and please help to share their story.
DonationsSee top donations
- Tara Schmalz
- Angie Sikora
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more