Eric passed away peacefully on Saturday, March 3, 2018 at the age of 41. His body was simply too sick to survive the liver transplant surgery. Eric fought bravely right to the very end.
He leaves behind his beloved wife and two amazing children. This fund was started on his insistance to make sure his family was taken care of.
Your donation will help pay for his memorial service and expenses. It will allow his wife to stay home with his children to allow them to grieve and heal together.
Please see below to read Eric's story.
Eric Whitbread is a 41 year old married father. He and his wife, Aimee, have two kids: Maya (14) and Benjamin (10). The Whitbread family lives in Battleford, Saskatchewan. Eric loves to cook, fish, and take photographs. He enjoys playing guitar with Maya and throwing the football with Ben.
(Whitbread family, July 2016)
Eric has liver cirrhosis and needs a transplant to save his life. Diagnosed in August 2017, Eric's liver disease progressed very quickly despite the many healthy lifestyle changes he made.
(Eric & Odin at Battlefords Union Hospital, November 2017)
Eric's specialist told him in December 2017 that he would need a liver transplant or he would die. Eric continued to get sicker. On January 16, 2018, the doctors at their local hospital told Aimee the unthinkable - Eric was dying. His organs were shutting down and there was little hope left. They recommended that Aimee make him comfortable in his last days.
Aimee did not feel that this was the right course of action at that time. She couldn't look at Maya and Ben and tell them they did everything they could to save their dad. Unwilling to accept the prognosis, Aimee chose to have Eric transferred to a larger hospital in Saskatoon. He remained in the ICU at Royal University Hospital for 5 weeks, fighting for his life with everything he had.
(Eric at Royal University Hospital, January 2018)
Over those 6 weeks, Eric made incredible improvement. He regained consciousness, had his breathing and feeding tubes removed, and began to gain some mobility. Being bedridden for this long after already losing most of his muscle mass, Eric could no longer sit unassisted, let alone stand or walk. He had a long road ahead of him.
(Eric at Royal University Hospital, February 2018)
On the evening of Feb. 22, Eric was told that the transplant team at the University of Alberta Hospital would like to assess him in person. Three hours later, Eric was flown by air ambulance to Edmonton. He is currently in the ICU and is being assessed by a wide variety of medical professionals to determine if he is a good candidate for transplant surgery. If he is approved for surgery, Eric and Aimee will need to stay in Edmonton for 3 months post-surgery while he recovers.
Eric and his family need help to pay for the ever-growing costs of his medical treatment outside of their community and their province. With Eric on Disability and Aimee's sick days running out at work, money is tight for their family. They appreciate all donations which will help pay for things like accomodations in Edmonton, gas, ambulance trips, etc. It will also help pay for groceries, bills, rent, etc. back home in Battleford to keep life as "normal" as possible for the kids while their mom and dad are away.
Thank you for supporting Eric and the entire Whitbread family as he makes his recovery to health.
(Eric at the Beaver Grill, December 2017)
More about Eric's journey to transplant:
Petition to have Eric accepted as a liver transplant candidate
National Post article
Global News Radio interview
Global News blog by Danielle Smith
David Kirton interview
John Gormley interview
- Chris Enns
- Sieglinda Bailey
- Annette Sheehan
- Brent Indenbosch
- Arnold R
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