Chinese tourist Terry Ho is back home in Hong Kong thanks to the kindness of Aberdeen Evening Express readers.
Four months ago, Ho was fighting for his life after being attacked in an Aberdeen street. He spent two weeks in a coma.
His mother, Yuk Ying Leung, borrowed £4,000 to travel the 6,000 miles to be at his bedside.
And in a series of interviews with the Evening Express, she revealed the mercy dash could lead her impoverished family into financial ruin.
Touched by the family’s plight, the Express launched the HO (Helping Others) Fund to aid them and called on the NHS to scrap the hospital fees.
The fund raised £16,357, and 1,200 readers signed a petition which persuaded the NHS not to charge for his hospital stay.
Some of the money was used to pay for two NHS nurses to accompany Terry and his mother on the flight home – a stipulation by Virgin Airlines who donated two free flights.
Before leaving, the family were given an album by the Express with pictures of their time in the city and messages of support and goodwill.
Evening Express reporter Gavin Roberts flew to Hong Kong to report on the homecoming. He said: “The experience of being involved in Terry’s life has been as uplifting as it has been tragic.
“Although I knew all about the family’s financial problems, it still came as a surprise to see the tiny flat on the 16th floor of a cramped apartment building in the Sha Tin district.
“Despite the attack, Terry and his mother left Aberdeen with a fondness for the city and its people. That’s down to the generosity and warmth of those who took Terry and his family to their hearts, and the help and support of NHS Grampian staff.”
Many people will benefit from the HO Fund as some of the money is going towards a Red Cross centre in Aberdeen for the relatives of hospital patients.
Two men have appeared in private at Aberdeen Sheriff Court on serious charges in connection with the incident involving Ho.