A MELBOURNE family whose seven-year-old son is battling terminal brain cancer fear besieged health guru Belle Gibson used their story to help validate her own cancer claims.
Penne and Wolfgang Schwarz say there are glaring similarities between their son Joshua’s devastating diagnosis and Gibson’s miraculous cancer survival claims.
Gibson, 23, befriended Ms Schwarz on social media in 2013 after hearing of Joshua’s fight for life with an anaplastic astrocytoma grade three (AA3), caused by a rare genetic disorder.
But now the Schwarzes say they have questions the woman they welcomed into their lives won’t answer.
“It wasn’t until I started reading all of the recent media reports about Belle that I started to see the similarities,” Ms Schwarz, 45, said.
“We can’t help but think, ‘Did she use us to get in the mind of Joshua?’.
“She’d always ask heaps of questions about Joshy’s cancer and treatments. Was it to give her more credibility?”
Ms Schwarz said the family was blindsided by media reports Gibson last year purported to raise funds for Joshua through sales of her health and wellness app, The Whole Pantry.
The Schwarz family said they never knew about the fundraiser and hadn’t received any donation from Gibson.