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Friends of Darrell Oake set up this website. ((CBC))

Friends and colleagues of a photographer suffering from a paralyzing illness are banding together to help him.

Darrell Oake was recently diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome, an autoimmune disorder that can cause weakness and paralysis.

"He was complaining of numbness from his head to his feet," wife Leanne told CBC News. "He could hardly walk, he had a little bit of slurred speech, so we took him in to see what was going on with him."

Darrell, who supports his family as a freelance photographer in the Halifax area, has been in the hospital for the last three weeks.

It wasn't long before friends like Frank Zinck offered to help. He created a website so people can donate money to help the Oakes.

"In the last 20 hours, I just can't get over how many people have responded to it. It's been unbelievable," Zinck said.

Leanne Oake said it's been a struggle to keep life as normal as possible for their four boys.

"They're worried about dad, just like I am," she said.

The IWK Health Centre says 30 people in Nova Scotia were diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome last year. Most people who get it make a full recovery.