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Community rallies behind former Wentworth native and star of 'The Week the Women Went'


TATAMAGOUCHE - Family and friends are rallying to help former Wentworth native Chris Patriquin and his family.

The 34-year-old father of four, also a participant of CBC's most recent edition of'The Week the Women Went,' has been diagnosed with inoperable terminal cancer.

"To be told his life is very short is heartbreaking," said family member Phyllis Rice.

"On Nov. 9 they got the awful news and didn't know anything was wrong before that."

She said Patriquin had visited his doctor that day with pains in his back and during a whirlwind of appointments at three hospitals within the next 24 hours he was told he had cancer in advanced stages.

Rice said the cancer has moved into his spine and ribs, and Patriquin has lost the function of one kidney.

"He has already undergone radiation and now his only hope is to take his medications at home," she said.

Patriquin is a well-known face at both the Barrachois and Toney River wharfs where he has fished alongside his father-in-law Allan Buckler for years.

In the off-season he works in construction at job sites across the Maritimes.

He was raised in the Wentworth area, attended Pugwash District High School and settled in Tatamagouche with his wife, Vicki, to raise their four children - aged eight, six, two and one.

Patriquin is also one of the stars of the Week the Women Went mini series that aired on CBC in early 2009. His honest portrayal of life in a rural community as he cared for his children while preparing a vessel for lobster fishing season earned him a great number of fans both locally and across the country.

Rice said at this point Patriquin is no longer able to work so the family has no income.

"It's really important for people to support the family," said Rice. "This is really hard at Christmastime and they are trying to keep life as normal as possible for the kids."

A New Year's Eve dance will be held at the North Shore Recreation Centre in Tatamagouche from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. for people age 19 and older. Donations will be received at the door. Throughout the evening there will be door prizes, a silent auction, spot dances and 50/50 draws as well as tickets sold on spring lobster.

Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for anyone who would like to make a donation but cannot attend the dance.

For more information contact Rice at 657-3436. Donations can also be mailed to Patriquin Family Benefit, C/O Phyllis Rice, 2807 Sunrise Trail, RR#1 Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia, B0K 1V0.

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