Long Eaton girls’ Ukrainian grandad stuck in warzone needs cancer therapy

A Family in Long Eaton are calling on charitable donations to pay for private healthcare in the UK for the childrens grandfather who is currently living in The Ukraine. Pictured is Natalya Antonio, James Johnson, Alexandra Antonio 10 and Alina Antonio 14.
A Family in Long Eaton are calling on charitable donations to pay for private healthcare in the UK for the childrens grandfather who is currently living in The Ukraine. Pictured is Natalya Antonio, James Johnson, Alexandra Antonio 10 and Alina Antonio 14.

A Long Eaton family have told of their desperate plea for fundraisers as they try to rescue their girls’ grandad from Ukraine and get him the medical treatment he needs.

James Johnson, 31, Natalya, 38, and their children are appealing to local people to help save Natalya’s father Alexander, who is suffering from prostate cancer.

Residing in the war-torn area of Donetsk, Alexander Hvostov, 61, is believed to have had cancer for years, but as doctors have all fled the region he cannot get the care he needs and may only have months to live.

James said: “It’s too dangerous. He spends most nights in the basement of his house because there is still shooting going on.”

The authorities don’t allow much travel but Alexander came to the UK on holiday two years ago and was complaining of pains even then.

His cancer has already spread to his bones, but with proper care he could live for at least another five years, so the family want to bring him to the UK on a medical visa.

James added: “We’ve asked the NHS, and they won’t treat him so we are trying to get him treated at the Spire hospital.

“Chemotherapy is expensive. It costs up to £50,000. We hope to raise as much as we can, and every penny will be spent on his care.”

The family talk to Alexander on Skype every night.

Mum Natalya said: “It was horrible to hear the news. I cry to him so many times when I hear how weak he is.

“I know my dad - he is such an energetic man. He’s two metres high and built of stone, so to hear him in so much pain... he is not my dad.

“He is 61, it’s no age to give up on life, and now with our appeal, you see it in his eyes - he has a little hope.”

Alexander Hvostov has lived in Donetsk all his life. He ran has own business transporting coal but now is too weak to drive. He said: “From the beginning I didn’t want to believe I had cancer, but I see my daughters are spending thousands of dollars for hospital treatment and I feel guilty that they have to do this. It feels like the end of the world with the war.

“I have my wife but I feel so alone with this. I know people are trying hard for me and I feel very grateful.”

Visit www.justgiving.com/yimby/please-help-alexander to donate to the family.