Main fundraiser photo

Megan's Smile

Donation protected
Hello family and friends, 

My name is Danielle Brinker and I'm Megan Kessler's cousin. I'm reaching out to you on behalf of her entire family because Megan is in need of our help. She would never ask for help on her own because she does not want to burden anyone. However, I know as well as you do that Megan would do anything to help someone in need which is why I want to share her story with you.

As some of you may know, Megan has gone through some serious medical challenges over the past year. Last June Megan developed paralysis on the left side of her face causing her to not be able to blink, close her eye, swallow properly and worst of all she lost her ability to smile. Over the next few months, the paralysis slowly improved. However, this February the paralysis came back. After running many tests including blood tests, CT scans and MRI's it was discovered that Megan has a tumor behind her left ear. The tumor is causing pressure to the nerves of her face affecting the paralysis even more. The tumor can only be removed if the doctors remove the nerve also which would leave permanent paralysis to the left side of her face.

Megan's team of doctors came together to discuss the best approach at fixing this very rare tumor. They decided the best option at this time was to release the pressure on the nerve with surgery which hopefully will bring her smile back. On 4/17/19 Megan had surgery to have part of her ear bone removed so the doctors could get to the tumor and nerves to release pressure on the mass that was behind her ear. Going into the surgery Megan knew this would cause her to lose hearing in her left ear and that has happened. Megan has constant ringing in her ear, is feeling dizzy and is in pain. While we hope and pray these side effects go away and that her paralysis will disappear there is no guarantee. Doctors said we won't know for 3-5 months if the surgery temporarily reversed the paralysis.  But the doctors all agree that the tumor will have to come out at some point and if she gets movement back in her face because of surgery it will most likely only be 2-4 years before the paralysis returns if not sooner depending on how fast the tumor grows.

Megan's team of doctors have all determined that Megan can not continue to work as a NICU nurse until she has given herself time to recover and see if the surgery helped with the paralysis. For those of you that know Megan well this is devastating to her. Being a NICU nurse is her passion, and she loves her job so much. She spent years going to school to be a nurse and loves working with the team at Mercy.

Megan is 24 years old and recently moved into a place of her own. The news of her not being able to work the next few months is causing her more stress which her doctors believe could cause more issues as she tries to recover from surgery. Megan has applied for disability, but she is still waiting to be approved so at this time she is no longer being paid by Mercy as she has used all of her sick and vacation days.  If she receives disability she will only receive approximately half her pay.

Megan's case is so rare and unheard of that she is in the process of being referred to the Mayo Clinic. There hopefully Megan will have a team of doctors all in the same place at the same time who can help treat her paralysis and her tumor. 

I think we all can agree Megan is one of the nicest and most caring people you will ever meet and she would be the first to help anyone of us if we needed it.  So we are asking you to please help us bring Megan's smile back. Our goal is to raise $3,000 for Megan to help cover some of her expenses and her trip to Mayo. Any amount will help. Please know how much our family and sweet Megan appreciates you. If you would rather send a check than donate online please contact me at [email redacted] 

Thank you for supporting Megan!


  • Bryan Watkins
    • $25 (Offline)
    • 5 yrs
  • Anonymous
    • $300 (Offline)
    • 5 yrs
  • John Polston
    • $100 (Offline)
    • 5 yrs
  • Conley Nails
    • $60 (Offline)
    • 5 yrs
  • Amanda Austin
    • $50 (Offline)
    • 5 yrs


Danielle Brinker
O’Fallon, MO

Your easy, powerful, and trusted home for help

  • Easy

    Donate quickly and easily

  • Powerful

    Send help right to the people and causes you care about

  • Trusted

    Your donation is protected by the GoFundMe Giving Guarantee