TIMOTHY Little complained of headaches to his teenage daughter a little more than a fortnight ago.
Then eight days before Christmas Timothy's mum, Tannum Sands woman Suzanne Pyke, received a heartbreaking phone call telling her the dad of five had been struck down by a brain aneurism.
Another one of her sons, Daniel, also her full-time carer, said his mum's struggle to come to terms with outliving her son had left her bedbound over Christmas.
"Your mum doesn't expect to outlive her children," he said.
"She's still in shock. It's hit her pretty hard.
"She says she feels she's in a haze and she's in a bad dream and she's going to go to bed and wake up from the bad dream."
All Daniel wants to give his mum for Christmas is the chance to say a final goodbye to her son at his funeral in their home state of Tasmania in February.
"I don't really know what to do apart from this," Daniel said.
But Daniel, who with his mum survives on carer payments and her disability pension, is struggling to scrape together the money the pair need to return to Hobart for his brother's funeral.
So far, 22 people have donated $1000 of a $5000 target, which will help cover the costs of the funeral, flights, and accommodation.
His brother, who lived in Brisbane, will be cremated there and then his ashes will be sent to Tasmania to be released before the funeral.
Ms Pyke moved to Gladstone 13 years ago to take care of her dyeing mum and settled down after she passed away. Daniel left his life behind in Brisbane three years ago to take care of his mum, who suffers from debilitating arthritis.
Mr Pyke said, with his mum's arthritis, which has left her constantly battling severe pain in her back and legs, a seven-hour drive to Brisbane isn't an option.
Her and Daniel face a hefty $1300 return fare for the flight to Hobart, along with the many other costs of running a funeral.
Mr Pyke said while he understood many families were finding it financially tough at this time of the year, he and his mum have been left with no choice but to ask for help.
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