East London mom fighting both Covid-19 and stage 4 cancer
East London mom Cheree Mc Ewen has fought stage 4 cancer for the past six years. She moved to the city from Komani last year to be closer to hospitals and to help grow her business in order to help her to pay for expensive cancer treatments.
Mc Ewen is a beauty therapist who offers specialised treatments.
To help raise cancer awareness, Mc Ewen has chronicled her fight against the disease on social media, taking followers through each step of her journey; in and out of specialists’ offices and hospital wards.
The mother of two young boys recently had to travel to Johannesburg for two massive invasive surgeries to remove more than 20 tumours from her body at Mediclinic Morningside. While she was there, the hospital had an outbreak of Covid-19 and was closed after 88 people tested positive for the coronavirus disease.
Before being discharged three weeks ago, the hospital tested Mc Ewen as a precaution as she was one of the patients who had been exposed to the virus while there. At the time she tested negative and was cleared to leave.
Mc Ewen told DispatchLIVE how the panic over the pandemic grew at the hospital as more and more staff and patients were diagnosed with the coronavirus disease. She said that the staff there had tried their best to minimise risk and everyone had been issued with masks and protective equipment.
After she arrived back in East London her health began to deteriorate. She initially thought this was from the side effects of her surgery. A few days ago, however, she became concerned after developing a severe cough.
Mc Ewen was then tested for Covid-19 again.
On Sunday morning she was contacted by her doctor who told her that her results had come back, and she had tested positive.
I’ll kick Covid-19’s butt, just like I’m going to kick cancer’s butt. Because I’m a mom, and that’s what we do. We don’t give up! We fight until our last breath. I have my sons, my precious boys, to live for.
Mc Ewen, who is currently self-isolating at home, told DispatchLIVE that while she was very unwell and her breathing was painful and difficult, she was determined to beat the disease.
“I’ll kick Covid-19’s butt, just like I’m going to kick cancer’s butt. Because I’m a mom, and that’s what we do. We don’t give up! We fight until our last breath. I have my sons, my precious boys, to live for,” she said.
Unable to work for some time because of lockdown regulations, as well as her illness, on top of everything the single mom now has no source of income.
Because of this and her declining health, Mc Ewen is desperate to move back to Komani to be with her family. Good Samaritans have set up a fund to help her achieve this through the registered non-profit organisation Wings of Love. They can be contacted on 061 426 6578.
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