of intensive reading on the sickness itself,” Shelton Sr told THE WEEKEND STAR. “I remember even when the doctor was talking about it. He was telling us to go on the Internet and read about it. It really affected him mentally. Sometimes he sits down and asks: dreadful in itself to know that it’s one of those sicknesses that really locks you off from your social life.”
Luton Shelton, Jamaica’s most prolific scorer with 35 international goals, had been missing from the limelight since his looping header scored for his club Harbour View against Tivoli Gardens in the Red Stripe Premier League in February 2017. This led fans to speculate about his whereabouts and well-being.
Both Shelton Sr and Bobbette are always by the former footballer’s side, as they are key to helping him around the house and interpreting his now guttural speech.
Mrs Shelton said that her husband has related to her many times just how much he wishes he could speak again.
“For all his sickness, if he could trade it for just his speech,” she said. “If he could still be able to speak and have his voice, that’s the only issue. Even if he still has his weaknesses here and there, the voice, that’s his main concern.”
“If he starts a conversation, once you understand the line of conversation, you just put everything together. Some words are unclear but you just know exactly what he’s saying. I dunno, I guess because I’m here with him all day, every day, and I just read his lips, so it’s easier for me.”
Since learning of Shelton’s condition, Sports Minister Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange has said that her ministry will donate $5 million to his treatment.
From left: Luton Shelton; his wife, Bobbette; and his father, Luton Shelton Sr, during an interview at the former national striker’s upper St Andrew home.