A Moray man who fell ill when in Holland to see his football heroes in a pre-season game is now on the road to recovery.
Kyle Whyte from Alves spent his 20th birthday on life support in an Amsterdam hospital after falling ill at the airport when travelling home with friends from the Moray Emerald Celtic Supporters Club.
Friends and family immediately rallied around Kyle, who as a youngster suffered from a rare blood condition that required regular treatment.
Kyle, a former pupil at Forres Academy, has undergone a bone marrow transplant in the past but friends say that he refused to allow his condition to curb his enthusiasm for life.
Last night Allan Donaldson, who was with Kyle when he fell ill, expressed his delight that his friend is now sending regular text messages – with his only care appearing to be ensuring a ticket for Celtic’s forthcoming SPL match in Dingwall against Ross County.
Mr Donaldson said: “The first few texts I got were just reassuring me that he was recovering, but I heard a lot more from him on Wednesday - when his main concern was if he would get a ticket for Celtic’s game against Ross County in a couple of weeks.
“That was typical of Kyle and I know he is getting better when he is thinking that way. We don’t know yet when he will be out of hospital again and heading back home, but he would I think need to build his strength up again so it is just a waiting game at present.”
Mr Donaldson said that the cause of Kyle’s illness was a stomach infection, adding that it may be some time before he is fully recovered.
A collection to help with medical and family expenses has raised £1850 with more expected from local supporters organisation. How much of that is required will only be known after a decision is made by Kyle’s travel insurers. Mr Donaldson said: “Insurers may insist that Kyle had a pre-existing condition, although this was a stomach infection that could have happened to anyone at any time.
“The infection spread through his body - but even if insurers do pay out it will not cover things like his mother’s expenses in going out there, so the money raised will go towards that and anything that is left over we will give to a deserving local charity as a donation from Kyle.”