Published: 16:13, 19 June 2022
| Updated: 14:22, 20 June 2022
A desperate family is appealing for financial help to give their teenage son with cancer a fighting chance through potentially life-saving cancer surgery abroad.
Formula 1 fanatic Jack Rear was a typical Ashford teenager, enjoying his gaming consoles and supporting Chelsea FC, until September last year when his family's world fell apart.
Then aged just 15, Jack had complained of feeling poorly two months prior and throughout the summer.
But after several wrongful diagnoses ranging from gastroenteritis to anxiety, the teen from Sellindge was finally discovered to have cancer in his abdomen.
He was blue-lighted to St George's Hospital in London where doctors carried out initial treatment to get his bowels functioning properly again.
Jack was then transferred to the Royal Marsden Hospital to begin nine blocks of intense chemotherapy aimed at shrinking the tumours caused by a rare aggressive form of soft-tissue cancer known as sarcoma.
Initial results looked good and so Jack underwent a further series of five blocks.
Jack, now 16, should have been taking his GCSE's that year at Brockhill Park Performing Arts School but was unable to go to class.
Doctors agreed that the teen's only hope of a full recovery was surgery to remove the cancerous areas. But his oncologist believes that his tumours are still too large to operate and could only offer the family the prospect of another 12 months of chemotherapy.
Jack's mother Emma Rear said: "You can only have so many cycles of the same chemo. Jack is now scheduled to start a different type of chemotherapy, but there's no certainty that this will reduce his tumours or even keep his condition stable."
For that reason, Emma and her husband Shane are anxious to secure him the surgery he needs as quickly as possible.
They have been contacting specialist hospitals in New York, who may be able to assist Jack sooner.
Emma said: "If the tumours are not removed there's still a chance the cancer could spread.
"We will never give up hope. We believe that there must be someone out there who can help him."
She added: "We've heard of other families who have had children treated successfully abroad."
Jack is Emma and Shane's only child.
While he and his parents wait to hear back from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, they have begun raising the funds they will need to pay for the treatment.
A GoFundMe page has been set up with the initial target of raising £50,000.
To date £1,385 has been raised. Donations can be made here.
Emma added: "If anyone can help us to get Jack the surgery he so desperately needs, we would be so grateful!"