Tough times for Jermaine Barrett

September 19, 2017
Jermaine Barrett flanked by his sisters Chantel Dias (left) and Shanice Dias at their home in Mt Salem, St James.

Jermaine Barrett spends most of his days in bed sleeping. He hardly has the strength to speak, and when he does, his words are slurred. Additionally, he hardly eats as well.

"The doctors in the US did a scan, saw where it (the tumor) came back, and have made the assessment that they cannot touch it or do anything more for him," Chantel Dias, Barrett's sister, told WESTERN STAR during a visit the family's home last week.

"When he wakes in the morning and we dress him face, he sleeps straight back into the evening. He sleeps a lot, and most times he doesn't want no food," explained Chantel, who along with a smaller sister, Shanice Dias, takes care of their brother on a daily basis.

"It is no pressure to look after him because he is my best friend, my everything. So seeing him like this, I have to just take it strong and thank everyone who showed him support," she added.

One such support came in the form of charity group Jamaican Madhouse and its president, Shena Carty.

"When I left him after we brought him back to Jamaica in August, it was rough. I hated to have to tell him goodbye, because he needs all the support and comfort he can get," Carty outlined.




"We, as a community, just have to try and ensure that he is comfortable, and help out the family. People need to know what is happening to him because a lot of them saw the story and fell in love with it," she added.

Barrett's illness has left him in a frail and fatigued state. The 28-year-old Mount Salem resident was first featured in THE STAR in April 2016, when he was pleading for help to go overseas to treat what was then a mysterious growth on his face. It was later diagnosed as a cancerous tumour. Despite undergoing treatment in the United States, Barrett has been pinned against the ropes by the cancer. His mother is not taking it well.

"It's very, very difficult for me. Sometimes me feel sick. I cannot eat. He's my one son. If he was on his feet, I would be OK because he normally takes care of me. So, to be seeing him like this, sometimes I don't want to talk about it," said Jean Carroll, who is a vendor from Mount Salem in St James.

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