Hurricane victim, cancer patient living in camper behind flooded - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Hurricane victim, cancer patient living in camper behind flooded home

Patrick Bathurst sits in his tiny camper with his dogs just behind his flooded out Pender County home. (Source: WECT) Patrick Bathurst sits in his tiny camper with his dogs just behind his flooded out Pender County home. (Source: WECT)
PENDER COUNTY, NC (WECT) -

Patrick Bathurst, 66, has stage four prostate cancer. Bathurst was diagnosed in 2009 with the disease he said will take his life.

The prognosis is not good. Doctors say he could have one to five years to live.

Bathurst, however, isn't exactly living out his remaining days comfortably. Instead, he's living in a tiny camper behind his destroyed home.

"It was really a typical day. I was watching the news on Hurricane Matthew, and knew it would be coming, but never thought it would be this bad," Bathurst said.

He had no choice but to leave his house and seek higher ground. His home backs up to a canal into which the Black River in Pender County flows.  

"I grabbed what I could. Grabbed the two dogs, which was my main concern," he said.

After the hurricane, Bathurst heard from neighbors he couldn't return to his home because it was inundated with three feet of water. All this was happening as he was going through extensive chemotherapy treatments.

"I was like, 'What more?' I had been fighting cancer since 2009. I turned my life over to Jesus, and I was sort of in a good place dealing with it all, and then this hit and I was like, 'What else is gonna happen?'" Bathurst said.

Bathurst is receiving help from the N.C. Baptist Men. They are working to get him back into his house so he can live out his remaining days in comfort.

The N.C. Baptist men have been the perfect prescription, working hard to finish the home, but they have their own fight.

"Now we are at the point we have a number of homes that have to be raised to meet FEMA requirements, but we can't do anything at all until grants are available," said Mike Moser, who is with the group.

With federal money at a standstill, they now rely solely on donations. The group will speak to the Pender County Commissioners on Monday night about their plight. 

They want to continue helping people like Bathurst, but FEMA grant money is not coming in fast enough. So far the group has torn out 82 homes in Pender County.

The group hopes to have Bathurst back in his original house in the next 30 days. 

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