Family in plea to get paralysed Norfolk man home after Kuwait crash
The family of a Norfolk man left almost completely paralysed in a car accident in Kuwait is appealing for help to raise the �27,000 it will cost to fly him back to the UK for specialist treatment.
Alister Masters, 33, was left in a critical condition and unable to move 85pc of his body after the two-car crash in Mahboula on April 24, which left the driver of the other car dead.
Despite receiving treatment at the Al Adan Hospital in Kuwait City, Mr Masters – who was between contracting jobs at the time and so had no medical insurance – has been told there is nothing more Kuwaiti doctors can do for him.
His family is now trying to bring him home in a medical plane for treatment at Addenbrooke's Hospital, in Cambridge, but must raise the money.
His brother, Ashley, 45, from Brandon, said Mr Masters, a former Methwold High pupil who worked in Kuwait for five years, had a broken neck and a stretched spinal cord. He was also on a respiratory machine and was sedated to aid his recovery.
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'I've spoken to the British consulate and they've said they will help me with everything apart from the flights,' he said. 'Now we're fundraising all the time and have got a plane ready to go, I've even got his medical records - it's just trying to get the money together.
'To begin with we didn't know how bad it was - the information was patchy but we know an Arab driver went from one side of the road to another and hit Alister and two other people as well.
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'Alister's car went into the wall and that's when he took his injuries. It wasn't until we talked to one of his friends we knew how bad it was. We were all very upset but once I knew I had to take control and make things happen, I just got on with it.'
Mr Masters' mother, Maggie Davis, and fianc�e, Jackie Ong Masters, are at his bedside, his father, Malcolm Masters, is attempting to raise funds from his Thai home and Ashley, and sister, Diana Masters, have tried to raise awareness in Norfolk.
So far about �10,000 has been raised by the family, originally from Mundford, near Brandon, and friends both at home and in Kuwait. Ashley added: 'He's got a lot of friends out there and is always happy-go-lucky and making people laugh - that's why people are getting together to help with this. 'He'd always be the first person to put in the pot if someone needed help.
'For the last three or four days though I've been running around in circles talking to our MP and anyone I can while he's just lying there in hospital on his back. 'We need to bring him home - every little helps.'
Diana, 30, from Mundford, said she believed her brother was not getting any better in the Kuwaiti hospital and had recently contracted a lung infection.
'He's miles away and we don't know what's going on out there - it's difficult,' she said. 'He's a well-known boy and Mum said when she was out there she couldn't believe how many friends he has.'
West Suffolk MP, Matthew Hancock, said he had spoken to Mr Masters' family and added: 'I have contacted the Foreign Office minister responsible for the Middle East, Alistair Burt, to alert him to the problem. I have also contacted the consular department responsible for Kuwait, within the Foreign Office, who are fully aware of the situation.
'These are clearly very difficult circumstances for everyone involved. My thoughts are with Mr Masters and his family and I will continue to assist in any way I can in trying to get him home.'
A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesman said: 'We are aware of the hospitalisation of a British national in Kuwait. We continue to provide consular assistance to him and his family at this difficult time.'
To donate to help bring Mr Masters' back to the UK call Ashley Masters on 07791 512217.