British Jews in the UK and Israel were this week asked to help the family of a 32-year old London-born father who made aliyah nine years ago after doctors told him he had incurable cancer.
Dave Kay, whose daughter Noa is two years old, was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer despite him never having smoked, and last year, after tests revealed the tumours had spread throughout his body, doctors told him that it was terminal.
Now, in a heartfelt plea, his wife Emly has posted a fundraising video called ‘Save Dave,’ asking for help to cover costs not covered by their health insurance, such as advanced tests in the United States, second medical opinions and conferences. The campaign has raised over $60,000 so far, almost half way to the $100,000 goal.
A former member of Woodside Park shul whose mother now sings in the Zemel choir, Dave grew up in London and was a member of youth movement HaNoar HaTzioni.
He later chaired the Jewish Society at Leeds Metropolitan University, before making aliyah in 2008, where he now lives in northern Israel, on Kibbutz Ginosar on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, after meeting Israeli-born Emly in Tel Aviv.
Last year the family was hit by the diagnosis that Dave had rare form of cancer – Stage IV Non-Small Cell Lung Carcinoma (NSCLC) EGFR+ with multiple Brain, Liver and Bones Metastasis.
“This news was, and continues to be, devastating for us and our young family,” said Emly, who works at Tel Hai College in the Upper Galil, where UJIA funds scholarships for Jewish, Arab, Druze and Circassian students.
“As Dave’s treatment progresses, we are realising how much we need extra support. We are surrounded by loving friends in our home in Israel, but our families are located in different countries and the intense medical treatment that Dave requires is taking its toll not only emotionally but financially.”
She said a combination of chemotherapy, whole-brain radiotherapy and various pills meant “we find ourselves not only with one household income but the responsibilities of taking care of Dave, our daughter, and daily tasks… Despite immense support from friends, we often find ourselves alone on this crazy journey”.
The family have been on an emotional rollercoaster since the diagnosis, after Dave’s oncologist put him on an experimental treatment which, for seven months, seemed to be working. The medication was then changed, with the second treatment showing signs of progression, but after two months, this too stopped being effective.
“We want Dave to have the best treatment possible. There is currently no cure for this type of cancer but with careful monitoring and effective treatment, we hope to manage the disease as a chronic illness so Dave can go back living his life,” said Emly.
“We are calling on the generosity of friends, family, neighbours and strangers to help us #SaveDave. Your financial support will allow us to pursue the most advanced treatments possible as well as help us with constant expenses we incur surrounding Dave’s treatment plan.”
You can donate to the Save Dave fundraising page here: http://www.youcaring.com/SaveDave
Save DaveFor those who don’t know yet, 13 months ago, just as our life together was starting, my husband and best friend David Kay, was diagnosed with stage IV Lung Cancer. It has been a very difficult year, but the continuing support of our friends and family has given us strength. They have given us the courage to open our story to the public and ask for your help. If you want to support us, please visit our fundraising page or share this video
– Emly Kay
Posted by Save Dave on Monday, 31 July 2017