Anxious wait as Leeds teenager Callum Forster struck by mystery illness in Spain

A fundraising appeal has been launched to help the family of a teenager who is seriously ill in hospital in Spain.

Wednesday, 1st August 2018, 10:08 am
Updated Wednesday, 1st August 2018, 10:13 am

Callum Forster’s family are facing an anxious wait at his bedside as doctors treat him in intensive care for a mystery illness thought to caused by poisoning.

Callum, 17, and stepdad Jamie Hadland were both taken ill after the family, of Ireland Wood, Leeds, enjoyed a night out.

They had been in holiday in Spain with Callum’s mum Helen Forster, 36, and brother Brandon, 12.

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Callum and Jamie were rushed to hospital in Torrevieja after coming down with the unexplained illness on Friday, July 20.

Mr Hadland has since been released from hospital but Callum remains heavily sedated after suffering from seizures and being put on life support.

Miss Forster said they had been to a bar after meeting friends in Villamartin, where the family have been staying with her mum Barbara Burks.

Miss Forster said: “We had been out with some friends. We had a lovely evening.

“But within 10 minutes of getting back Jamie started feeling really strange. We got him to bed and he started flinging himself all over.”

Miss Forster said Callum, who is hoping to start work as an electrical apprentice this September, then became ill.

She said: “He started fitting. Callum had ten seizures before the ambulance got there.

“It’s just been an absolute nightmare. It’s one step forwards and two steps back. Callum doesn’t know what’s going on and he’s in a foreign hospital. We’ve been told the recovery could take weeks or months. We just have no idea.

Mrs Forster said the family were being helped by the British Embassy and the cause of the illness was being investigated.

In Leeds, friends launched a crowdfunding appeal which has so far raised more than £2,300. Miss Forster said: “I’ve just been overwhelmed by all the generosity of people who don’t even know us.

“We’ve run out of all the money we brought out here.

“Jamie is not 100 per cent but he’s better than he was. I need the support of Jamie out here.

“We need to be with Callum all the time now at the hospital. And we need to be looking after Brandon so me and my mum are doing it between us.”

To find out how to help Callum’s family, click here