A Perth man’s broken family fears a mystery illness he contracted on a dream cruise could kill him before he returns to Australia this weekend.
Dave Crocos, 68, was celebrating his semi-retirement with his wife Jo on the cruise of a lifetime, departing from Los Angeles, passing through Hawaii and the Pacific, ending in Sydney.
They left on their trip on October 8, but shortly after the ship left Hawaii, Mr. Crocos’ health deteriorated.
He began suffering from fever and body aches and spent a week bedridden in his cabin before cruise doctors decided he needed hospital treatment.
The cruise rushed to American Samoa where Mr Crocos was admitted to the LBJ Tropical Medicine Center on Pago Pago Island on October 25.
The hospital is not equipped to treat the recently retired land surveyor and for over a week he has gone undiagnosed as his condition continues to deteriorate.
The family is now in a race against time and has described the situation as “disastrous”.
Perth retiree Dave Crocos (above) is fighting to survive a mystery illness in American Samoa while waiting for a medevac flight to Australia.
Mr Crocos (pictured with his wife Jo) went on a cruise from America to Sydney with his family on October 8 before being hospitalized on Pago Pago Island on October 25.
His son Matthew Bierberg fears his father could die by the end of the week if he is not evacuated to Australia.
“Time is against us,” he said 7News.
“My mother and sister are with him in the hospital, sleeping on the floor. We don’t know if he will survive.
Mr Bierberg said his father was a firm believer in insurance and even did a health check before the trip to ensure he was fit and healthy enough to go on the cruise.
A few weeks later, he needed a respirator to breathe.
The family had managed to organize a medical evacuation flight to New Zealand, but it was abandoned at the last minute due to a lack of hospital beds.
Mr. Crocos’ wife (left) and daughter (second from left) spent a week with him in hospital while waiting for a medevac flight.
Their best hope is that Mr Crocos can hold on long enough for a planned evacuation flight to Brisbane on Saturday.
“His condition is deteriorating rapidly. I don’t think he has any days,” Mr. Bierberg said.
In an interview with Nine newsMr Bierberg said his family “fears the worst”.
“(When he first got sick) he started sweating a lot and it got worse to the point where he couldn’t actually get out of bed, he was in pain,” he said.
Mr. Bierberg said Samoan doctors have an idea of what might be wrong with his father, but are unable to officially diagnose or treat it.
“They think it’s gallbladder related, but they don’t have the technology or equipment to properly diagnose it,” he said.
A medevac flight to Brisbane is planned for Saturday, but Mr Crocos’ son Matthew Bierberg (above) is not sure he will survive that long.
If the family manages to survive this ordeal, they hope their travel insurance will cover the cost of the medical episode.
“He (Mr Crocos) wouldn’t drive a car without insurance, he’s still covered for the worst case scenario,” Mr Bierberg said.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for comment.