Please help Jim fight AML MRC Cancer

My name is Connie Liccione. My older brother, James (Jim) Liccione, Jr., is a Sculptor, Conservator, and Restorer for an Art Museum in Vero, Beach, Florida.

The good Lord gave him a precious gift in creating beautiful works of Art. You can check out his website to see his artwork: http://www.jamesliccione.com 

Twelve weeks ago, Jim was fine albeit feeling fatigued which he dismissed as just working hard getting the Art shows ready at the Museum which can be demanding at times. 

With a little persuasion from his only sister, me, he decided to check in with his Doctor. The Doctor ordered some basic bloodwork and what he found was that Jim may have an Iron deficiency. Which, according, to the Doctor can be taken care of very easily. So more blood tests were ordered. 

Then came the devastating news. Jim was diagnosed with a very aggressive form of Leukemia called AML-MRC – Acute Myeloid Leukemia with Myelodysplasia related changes. 

Jim’s world turned upset down in one moment. In such a short period of time, Jim had to put his career on hold. My family and I are not new to Cancer. Both of my beautiful parents had cancer – both now deceased (and terribly loved and missed). 

My father, James A. Liccione, Sr., a WWII Purple Heart Veteran, battled 3 cancers in a 2 ½ year period: throat, stomach and prostate cancer. My beautiful mother, Concetta, had colon cancer. What I learned from them, by listening to their words and actions, is that life is a precious gift from God. They were grateful to God each and every day of their lives for life itself but especially when they battled cancer. They never complained – especially my father. He was so courageous through-out the 2 ½ years of his battle with his cancers. There was never a day that he did not have a smile or a kind word to say to others. 
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Now reality has set in for Jim. The next step was a visit to the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, FL., which is a long three-hour drive one way, to discuss diagnosis and treatment. On April 19th, Jim was admitted into the hospital to receive Chemo. He was told he would be in the hospital for 3 weeks but this was not the case. After the first round of chemo and hoping the only round, his bone marrow biopsy report showed that 25-35 % of cancer cells remained. The goal, according to the Doctor, is less than 5% of cancer cells. Jim started out with 70 to 80% of cancer cells initially. We were so devastated in hearing this. The doctor re-induced Chemo a second time. But this chemo was different, much stronger. It took its toll on Jim. 

Jim experienced internal bleeding, constant spiked fevers, severe pain and loss of appetite, chills, and active bleeding in both eyes. The right eye is blurred and he cannot clearly see. His counts continued to remain low and required many blood transfusions, platelet infusions, and bone marrow biopsies. Not to mention round the clock blood work, blood cultures, CAT scans, X rays, and visits from the Infectious Doctor to make sure there were no active infections. They had to transfer him to ICU at one point because of the fevers. 

And Jim continued to push through remembering our beautiful parents and keeping his faith in God. After being in the hospital for over a month, Jim has been deemed in remission and was discharged. 

But the battle is just beginning. He has a very tough, long battle ahead. In the weeks to come, the Cancer Doctors at Moffitt will determine if my brother is ready to move to the next phase of treatment – to prepare him for the most important part of a treatment called: Allogenic Stem Cell Treatment (Bone Marrow Transplant). 

On June 13th, Jim was required to return back to Moffitt as an outpatient to start the process to prepare his body for the transplant. Thursday, June 13th, was blood draws. 
June 14th through June 16th Jim had 8 ½ hours of chemo each day. This is what they call “Consolidation Therapy.” To ensure he remains in remission so that the transplant process can begin. He is also required to take additional medications and injections for this preparation. 

Jim was given a grueling itinerary for the bone marrow transplant in the weeks to come: 

July 10 – bloodwork – 20 tubes will be taken out. Bone Marrow Transplant class, Echocardiogram, EKG, CT scans (chest/sinus) 

July 11 - Psychosocial appointment with the Doctor Pulmonary Function Test Visit with the Bone Marrow Transplant Team: Doctor and Nurse 

July 12- bone marrow biopsy 

July 19- meet with Bone Marrow Doctor to discuss the results of bone marrow to determine if he will proceed for the Allogenic Stem Cell Transplant. 

For the transplant, Jim will be required to be in the hospital for one month. Then when discharged he will be required to take lodging that must be within 30 minutes from the hospital for a period of two months. This will require daily visits to the hospital for check-ups, testing, monitoring by the Doctors, and any emergency that may come up. 

With every appointment, procedure, trip, lodging, gas expense, and meals comes a cost that he did not and could not prepare for. The expenses for lodging is immense. This ordeal has depleted his savings to pay off long-distance trips to the Moffitt Cancer Center, relying on long term stays at hotels and other expenses necessary to get the proper treatments. 

My brother Jim would not ask anyone for help. He is always helping others in need. It is understanding that my brother is depressed and worried that he is in no way capable of meeting future medical expenses, prescriptions, and hospital expenses and mounting bills. His job is his sole means of financial support and has been placed on an extended leave of absence without any paychecks to meet his daily bills and medical expenses. 

Cancer is a horrible, insidious disease. My prayers are for every person fighting any kind of illness but especially Cancer. I am truly grateful to God for all the beautiful people that have been very supportive and loving towards Jim and my family. I thank you all for your prayers and continued prayers for Jim and my family. 

As his only sister, I am passionately reaching out to our community for help to meet my brother Jim’s medical expenses in this much-needed fundraising request. I am imploring to everyone’s kindness, understanding, your prayers, and generosity to help my brother in any capacity possible. I am extremely grateful and thankful for all the love and support my brother Jim has for all peoples he encounters and looks forward to the good he has done in life. But please if you can, consider a donation of any size to help him continue his battle with AMLMRC and the chance to have this bone marrow transplant, I would be truly grateful. Thank you all very much! Please if you could, share this on all social media. 

I will continue to update with his progress. God Bless and thank you all so much for your help!

Donations

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  • Joseph Liccione 
    • $200 
    • 10 d
  • Teresa Rushworth 
    • $100 (Offline)
    • 4 mos
  • John Liccione 
    • $100 (Offline)
    • 5 mos
  • Pat Cochran 
    • $100 (Offline)
    • 9 mos
  • Louie Alex Liccione 
    • $300 (Offline)
    • 9 mos
See all

Organizer

Connie Liccione 
Organizer
Lagrangeville, NY
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