On August 9, 2012 the world lost an amazing man from a long battle with pancreatic cancer. His wife, Beth lost a wonderful husband, her children, Ellyse (13) & Joshua (10), lost a devoted father. Mitch was an amazingly strong man. He was a wonderful husband, father, son, brother and friend.

The Steckler family is the strongest most compassionate family we have had the privilege to meet. Not only has Beth been a caretaker for her 3 family members who have suffered from a debilitating illness called Hereditary Pancreatitis but she has been a huge support system for fellow pancreatic sufferers. Unfortunately, Mitch's hereditary pancreatitis turned to pancreatic cancer. Since both their children also suffer from hereditary pancreatitis which is not only a very debilitating painful illness but has an increased risk of turning into pancreatic cancer as well. Their daughter El underwent a Total Pancreatectomy with Islet cell transplant a few years ago at the University of MN Fairview. Their son Josh is was schedule (before Mitch's passing) for the same surgery in a couple of weeks at the same hospital.

The TP-IAT is a huge surgery & can take 10-14 hours to complete. It has a 6-12 month recovery. During the surgery the pancreas & spleen are completely removed. Technicians in the laboratory isolate islet cells from the pancreas that has been removed. The surgeon then puts these cells back into the patient liver where they can continue to produce insulin. Without the pancreas the patient would become diabetic since the pancreas makes insulin. Therefore, an islet auto-transplant is usually performed along with along with the Pancreatectomy in hopes to prevent diabetes. Chronic illnesses is not only difficult on the patient but their caretakers, family & friends.

Throughout Beth's family suffering from this debilitating illness, Beth has managed to support so many others who suffer with pancreatic illness. The Steckler children have been through more than many have been through in a lifetime. Their strength & compassion for others is truly amazing to witness. Despite what they have been through they still manage to support others & remain positive. We hope to raise money to help ease some financial stress & ask that you please find it in your heart to donate to this amazing loving, compassionate & inspiring family. Any amount will be greatly appreciated even if its only a couple of dollars. The Steckler's will be grateful for your kindness in this time of sorrow. We hope they can use this fund however they need most.
Love,
Your Cranky Panky Family