Family launch charity campaign in memory of Peterhead woman who died from rare disease

Marlene, Michael and Megan
Marlene, Michael and Megan

The family of a Peterhead woman who died from a rare condition that turned her insides “to china” have launched a charity campaign to raise awareness of the disease.

Marlene Duncan died from a form of systemic scleroderma in July - a rare disease which left the 49-year-old unable to eat and digest food.

Marlene Duncan

Marlene Duncan

Her husband Michael and their daughter Megan have now taken it upon themselves to raise awareness and funding to help fight the disease which receives no government funding.

Michael said: “There’s no cure for what Marlene had, it just got worse as it went on.

“She never complained but at the end of the day she was in so much pain I just seen her disappear in front of my eyes.”

Michael said that one of the hardest things he and his family faced when his wife became ill was the lack of knowledge and funding for Marlene’s condition

He and Megan now want to try and change that and have launched a campaign for Scleroderma & Raynaud’s UK (SRUK) -the charity who help people fighting the disease.

The pair, who have already raised over £1,000 for the charity, will host a quiz night on night at Peterhead FC on Saturday November 19 at 7.30 pm.

Also that Saturday and Sunday Connie Chiappino, a relation of the family, will hold her yearly Christmas Fair with all money raised from the raffle going towards helping the condition.

The family are also keen to get local and Aberdeen businesses involved to help raise awareness about the condition and to put forward prizes for raffles.

Amy Baker, Head of Engagement and Development from Scleroderma & Raynaud’s UK. “At this very difficult time Michael and Megan have decided to celebrate Marlene’s life by fundraising in her memory to support other families facing the challenges of scleroderma.

“We would like to thank Michael and Megan for raising a fantastic £1,048.78 to support our work and increasing awareness of this little known but potentially devastating condition.

“As a charity we do not receive any government funding and so rely on support from individuals, like the Duncan Family, to continue our vital work; supporting families, funding research and increasing understanding of these conditions.”

You can also support Michael and Megan’s fundraising and awareness campaign by visiting