Ex-marathon runner has been forced to live in isolation after suddenly growing a huge tumour on his back. Just two years ago Li Yimo was known a super-fit, a keen runner and “model blood donor”.
The villager from Yulin City in southern China, said he still does not know the cause of the sudden and rapidly developing growth.
He said: “I’ve always been a very healthy person. I used to run marathons and I even have certificates from when I gave blood.”
He was known as a “model donor” because of the numerous times he gave blood – until he started growing the huge tumour on his back. “In 2015 the tumour began to grow and it increases in size every day,” he said.
Li’s wife left him and took their only child with her 10 years ago.
But she recently decided to return to him in order to care for her estranged former husband.
Li’s wife said: “We used to argue a lot, but he’s sick and can’t take care of himself.”
Until then, Li had been relying on his neighbours to get by, receiving donations of food and money from them.
But even with his wife back at his side, it is unlikely they will raise enough money on their own for a formal diagnosis, let alone surgery to have the growth removed.
Li said he had wanted to visit Tibet when his tumour first appeared, and he has had to put that dream on hold, perhaps forever.