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Baby joy for Gorleston dad Ryan Harman as he fights for medical lifeline

PUBLISHED: 11:24 04 July 2014 | UPDATED: 11:24 04 July 2014

John Palmer, father-in-law of Ryan Harman who suffers from motor neurone disease, pictured with wife Natalie on their wedding day. Picture: Lichfield Photographic Services

John Palmer, father-in-law of Ryan Harman who suffers from motor neurone disease, pictured with wife Natalie on their wedding day. Picture: Lichfield Photographic Services

Lichfield Photographic Services

The birth of his baby boy has given dad Ryan Harman an “inner strength” as he fights a debilitating disease.

The 33-year-old from Gorleston was diagnosed with motor neurone disease just three months after marrying wife Natalie in August 2012.

Now he and Mrs Harman hope a trip to China for pioneering stem cell treatment will improve his condition.

He is focused on his family following the birth of son Hugo Ryan, who was welcomed into the world last Friday.

Hugo, who tipped the scales at 7lb 10oz, is the couple’s first child together and has given the family a huge boost, as they now concentrate on the positives ahead of the China trip.

John Palmer, Mr Harman’s father-in-law, said: “The birth of his baby son has given him an inner strength to want to fight this disease head-on, and look to the future.

“He is really upbeat for this stem cell treatment and is just besotted with his baby.”

Mr Harman and a close friend, who has taken three weeks off work to accompany him, are set to fly out to the private Wu Medical Centre in Beijing in August, and are now finalising medical papers before officially booking with the hospital.

His family have been fundraising for the £20,000 minimum needed to pay for the trip and after an appeal in the Mercury they have reached their total.

But they are still appealing for donations to pay for additional expenses Mr Harman might need to cover once he is out there, such as buying medication to bring home.

Mr Palmer, 60, a self-employed window cleaner from Bradwell, said: “We had a great surge thanks to the paper. As soon as it was in, I was getting donations.”

The couple wished to thank the staff at the James Paget Hospital, where Hugo was born, as well as Mrs Harman’s sisters who were on hand during the birth.

To donate to Mr Harman’s fund visit Anyone wanting to support him can also make a donation to Mr Palmer.

nPostmen and oilfield workers will bike from London to Great Yarmouth to raise money for Mr Harman. The 150 mile trip will see friends Leigh Reeder, Paul Bunnewell, Tony Pammen, Ross Goodwin and Simon Gray cycle from Trafalgar Square to Nelson’s Monument on July 19.

Postie Mr Pammen, 44, said: “Donations of any amount will be appreciated more than ever to make Ryan’s trip to China possible and give the family some hope.”

For more information search for Ryan Harman Sponsored Cycle on Facebook.

Are you raising funds for a cause close to your heart? Email


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