FRIENDS and family of Central Coast man Andrew Cadigan, who raised more than $60,000 during an epic charity walk around Australia, have begun raising money themselves after the 31-year-old was critically injured in a horrific motorcycle crash in Thailand.
Mr Cadigan, of North Avoca, quit his job, sold his house and started walking on December 27, 2010, to raise money for cancer and leukaemia research.
The walk followed the death of his friend Chris Simpson, 24, after complications from a bone marrow transplant to treat myelodysplasia, a leukaemia-linked condition.
He raised $25,000 for the Cancer Council and almost $40,000 for the Leukaemia Foundation and crossed the Sydney Harbour Bridge on June 14 after an unassisted walk through Tasmania, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin, Cairns and Brisbane.
But a month later Mr Cadigan was left fighting for his life in Maharaj Hospital, Chiang Mai, after a motorcycle accident.
Close friend Ben Hansen said Mr Cadigan was riding a scooter on July 14 when a motorcycle rider cut him off, causing him to be thrown from his bike.
Mr Hansen said Mr Cadigan’s family have been given the tragic news that he has severe and permanent brain damage, meaning he will require round-the-clock care if he pulls through.
‘‘It’s just so unfair that this would happen,’’ Mr Hansen said.
‘‘The doctors have told his family that he will either die in Thailand or return home and require 24 hour care.
‘‘Either way it’s going to cost a lot of money for his medical care.’’
His friends and family have set up a trust fund to assist with costs and are organising a fund-raiser at Hardy’s Bay RSL & Citizens Club on September 1.
Anyone who wants to donate can go to the Andrew ‘‘Cad’’ Cadigan Trust page on Facebook.