In the Spring of 2013 Caleb was having pain and discomfort in his back. After months of these symptoms not resolving themselves he made an appointment to see a doctor. After a myriad of tests Caleb was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer and it was found that his liver was also infected.
With this particular type of cancer and how progressed it had become, Caleb was told he may only have 5 years to live. As you can imagine, this was extremely difficult for him and his family to hear. Caleb was now fighting for his life.
So fight he did! Doctors gave him treatment options and Caleb chose to get aggressive and start chemotherapy. After many months of different cancer treatments, there were periods of time when the treatments were working and things were looking good. There were also times that the treatments were not working and the cancer had spread. This was all taking a tremendous toll on Caleb’s body, but his spirits remained high.
Caleb then went in for a check up to see if the cancer had regressed or stayed the same. At this point they heard some very unfortunate news. The cancer was still spreading and the doctors didn’t give him an optimistic outlook. They told him that his only real chance of long term health was to have a liver transplant.
Caleb was immediately placed on the donor list to receive a new liver. Now, it was just a waiting game to find a match. The doctors said that the wait for a donor liver may take longer time than he has. The best case scenario was if a family member or friend was a match. After numerous family members and close friends considered testing to see if they were a compatible match, Caleb’s Mother Julie came back as the best possible match as a liver donor. After a successful liver transplant, he has a 20-30% chance of being cured completely of cancer.
Caleb scheduled his and Julie’s surgery for November 18th, 2015. He wanted to hold off on the surgery until after his best friend Anthony Braulick’s wedding (November 14th), in which he was one of the groomsman.
On November 18th, 2015 Caleb and Julie arrived in Rochester at Mayo Hospital for the liver transplant surgery. As expected, they were both extremely anxious about the whole procedure. After many hours of anticipation, the doctors gave word that surgery went very well and both Caleb and Julie had recovered nicely. The next step in the recovery process is that they both are to stay in The Gift of Life transplant recovery house. Julie remained there for 3-4 days and Caleb will stay for up to a month’s time, while Julie remains his primary caregiver.
Both Caleb and his Mother Julie have not been working normal work schedules and probably won’t for some time. We are asking that you please find time in your day to donate any amount of money you can to help take the financial burden off of them, so they can focus 100% on Caleb’s health and recovering together. A lot of their income has already gone towards the cost of hotel rooms, medical bills, and transportation to and from Rochester. The money you contribute will go towards paying Julie’s mortgage, utility bills, groceries and other costs of daily living. If you are unable to donate please share Caleb’s story with others.
Thank You and God Bless!
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