Cop's ’heartbreaking’ diagnosis inspires waves of support
IT took less than 24 hours for the Southern Downs and Granite Belt community to raise $18,000 for Tony Chandler and his family, after the police officer and father-of-two was struck down by multiple seizures.
Mr Chandler was hospitalised on Friday, July 31 after he suffered two seizures at work, according to long term friend Cara Cavallaro.
Four days later, he was diagnosed with a frontal lobe brain tumour. The news sent shockwaves throughout the community.
"We were heartbroken," Mrs Cavallaro said.
Frontal lobe tumours can cause changes to behaviour and emotions, with the possibility of reduced muscle strength, and sense of smell, according to the Cancer Council.
The family is well-known for their service to the community within both the police force and the health service, and Mrs Cavallaro was determined to pay it forward.
"They're top-notch, pure gold people and you don't find that much in the world," she said.
"They're all about helping other people, but now it's time for us to try and support them.
"When things like this happen it's good to not have to worry about money, so (a GoFundMe will give them) one less thing to stress about."
Mrs Cavallaro started the fundraiser early Monday morning and since then, hundreds of people from all across Australia have pledged their support.
The total currently stands at $19,216, just shy of the $20,000 goal.
Mrs Cavallaro hopes the money can help the Chandler family spend more time together in this difficult transitional period.
"It's been so incredibly awesome to see so many people love (the Chandler family) as much as we do," Mrs Cavallaro said.
"We want them to be able to see how loved they are, and how many people are there for them."
Mr Chandler declined to be interviewed, but said he felt truly humbled by the support.
Any money donated that goes over and beyond the needs of the family will be given to medical researchers who specialise in sports-induced brain injuries.