Brandon Oakley (36), a husband, father of 2, son, brother, uncle, friend, and an Operation Iraqi Freedom Army Veteran. Serving 18 months deployment and over 6 years in the military, needs our love, support, and prayers as he begins his greatest battle of all with the determination of a warrior.
In September 2015, Brandon went to the VA for a small spot on his left knee. The dermatologist removed the spot and told Brandon "not to worry" this was "no big deal." He went back 10 days later to have the stitches removed and was hit with a bombshell, the spot removed was Malignant Melanoma. They took Brandon into surgery in December 2015 to remove the Melanoma and to check his lymph nodes for the disease. That too, came back positive for Melanoma.
Beginning in January 2016, Brandon took his one and only injection of Interferon. The side effects were horrendous. Following Interferon, he began Yervoy. That treatment was deemed a failure and Brandon moved on to Keytruda, which he has been receiving Keytruda since March 2017.
Many Keytruda treatment sessions and clear PET scans, life was going as planned, and Brandon's cancer was under control. Brandon was on his way to good health, then January 27 happened...
It was a pretty lazy day at home with family when Brandon started to feel strange, He said he had a hard time gathering his thoughts. A hot shower is his "go to", so he went into the bathroom, and their whole world changed forever. A seizure began and Brandon hit the wall, vanity, floor, and everything around him. Ryder and Mackenzie went running into the bathroom and found him. Ryder called 911 and they came right away. Once he was in the ambulance, he was unable to tell them his name, birthday, the current month, nothing. Once he arrived in the Miami ER, they ordered a CT scan. The CT scan showed brain metastases. Brandon was then transported to Freedom Hospital for further treatment. They ordered an MRI and the MRI confirmed their fears. The Melanoma had metastasized into Brandon's brain, 15 tumors.
Brandon's team of doctors put their heads together to come up with the best plan. He has 10 sessions of radiation. Following the 10th session, he will have another MRI to check the sizes of the tumors. He has been referred out to KU Medical in Kansas City and they are hoping to get him into a clinical trial.
The main goal here is for radiation to shrink and/or kill all tumors present and for a clinical trial to be available to keep the Melanoma from spreading any further.
Two rounds of Radiation down and this is Brandon (Feb. 4, 2018).... Nothing can stop this man! Not even 15 brain tumors. First one out of the warmth and safety of his own truck to help this guy get moving again on the highway. This here is Brandon, the guy who has the biggest heart and always putting other before himself.
Brandon and his wife, Mackenzie. (married 10 years)
Mackenzie, this strong and gorgeous woman, was diagnosed with melanoma herself in September 2014. Thank the Lord above that hers has not spread into her lymph nodes, as she continues to be closely monitored by an oncologist.
Brandon, Mackenzie, and their son Ryder (9).
Ryder, a happy, precious little boy has several health issues and was born with a rare genetic disorder called Escobar Syndrome, where less than 100 people are diagnosed with this in the world. Ryder has already endured 42 operations to improve his quality of life and will continue to face many struggles throughout his life.
Brandon and his daughter, Blake (6).
Blake is a beautiful, smart, and sassy 6 year old who is ready to take on the world. The funny thing about Blake, she prefers to be called "Judy." She never complains about being bounced around to during our hectic life. She and Ryder are the perfect match.
This beautiful family needs our help, love, and prayers. Any donations would be greatly appreciated, but more than anything, please continue to lift this family up to the Lord in your prayers.
- James Chitty
- Stacy Hedgecorth
- DAVID HOTTENSTINE
- Mark Tomlinson
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