As many know, he's been battling cancer for a couple of years. It started with prostate and bone cancer in 2016, which he successfully fought for almost two years. It wasn't until January of 2018 that his health started to decline again. In March 2018, he was hospitalized for over 3 weeks, fighting a new and aggressive form of cancer (small cell carcinoma) that had invaded his liver, lungs, and bone marrow. It wasn't until the end of that hospital stay, when things began to improve, that we made a plan to go to Louisiana, visit his friends, do a little hunting and fishing, and visit the places that he loved so much and had frequently visited for over a span of 20 years. The plans for this trip helped him have something to look forward to through the 6 rounds of chemotherapy over the course of several months.
We left Madison, WI on August 1st, allowing ourselves two days to make the drive down. Thursday and Friday were spent with friends; laughing, having a few drinks, fishing, and making up for lost time together. It wasn't until Saturday that things abruptly changed and we rushed him to the nearest emergency department. Tests quickly revealed that his cancer has spread to his brain, causing a loss in cognitive function and mobility. We've been in a New Orleans hospital since then, receiving radiation treatment in hopes of halting further progression of the tumors. Our dilemma is that he can't handle the 15 hour drive back to Wisconsin and is also unable to take a commercial flight. Unfortunately, medical transportation via ambulance is too expensive and not covered by insurance.
Our only chance to get Dad home is by a private plane. We're frantically searching for an organization that offers free flights or a pilot and plane. We have been fortunate to get a few leads on private flights, but the costs for fuel will be expensive. In addition to that, we've had a lot of unexpected costs, including additional lodging, flights for my mom and sister to be with us at the hospital, food, and whatever medical costs being billed by insurance.
Those of you that know my family, especially Dad, know that he's always been too proud to ask for help. But we're desperate and time is a critical factor. We need to get him home to be with the rest of our family as soon as possible.
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