In October 2016, Eric and Jane became the proud parents of twin boys, Sandy and Jake. Eric and Jane rolled up their sleeves and got to the not-inconsiderable task of raising twins. The boys thrived — they ate, they slept (some), they grew, took first steps, climbed air conditioners, chased the cat, and began a nerve-wracking habit of goading the other to leap off the couch. In short, they became quintessential toddler twins. In the summer of 2018, the Goldman family moved from Brooklyn to Ossining, New York, a town about 40 miles north on the Hudson River. They set about making a new home for themselves where they continued to flourish, with a little more space and just as much love.
Shortly after moving to Ossining and just two days before Jake and Sandy’s second birthday, Eric underwent emergency brain surgery to remove a golf ball-sized tumor. Eric was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, or GBM, a rare form of brain cancer. There’s no known cure. To make matters worse, the genetic profile of Eric’s tumor is such that chemotherapy is less effective.
But there is still hope.
Hope for Eric means pursuing all available treatment options in the United States and in other countries. One critical piece of his treatment involves a personalized immunotherapy that works to teach the immune system how to fight the cancer thanks to a cocktail created out of actual pieces of the individual tumor. It is cutting-edge science, and as you might imagine, it is quite expensive.
While these personalized vaccines are still in an experimental phase, studies have shown successful outcomes. Unfortunately, this promising treatment is not available in the United States outside of clinical trials, which involve rigid requirements for participants including requiring that they forgo other potentially helpful treatment options.
Eric does not have this option.
The sad reality is if Eric waits for personalized vaccines to become the standard of care for GBM in the United States, he will die. Eric needs this treatment now — so they will be traveling outside of the United States as soon as possible to get started. That means major new expenses are already rolling in.
Soon, Eric will travel to Germany, where leading cancer experts will create the vaccine that will help Eric’s immune system fight the cancer. So in addition to the costs of making the vaccine itself, Eric and Jane will need to find ways to pay for flights, housing, child care and other expenses to make this treatment possible. They will handle all of these costs out of pocket. Eric will then need ongoing treatment, each round of which will incur significant additional expenses.
The good news is that unlike traditional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation, which have severe side effects and make patients very sick, a personalized vaccine likely means little more than flu-like symptoms. This is a significant factor for Eric’s quality of life.
Eric is now recovering from his second brain surgery, and began his latest round of radiation on July 8. Plans for his German-based therapy are being made. That’s why it’s so crucial for us to raise money now, so that Eric can move forward with the next phase of treatment that could prolong his life. With science, hope, prayer, and your help, Sandy and Jake will get to grow up with their dad, and Jane will get to grow old with the man she loves most.
Jane is already doing everything in her power to make that happen. A committed public defender at The Legal Aid Society, Jane began her career advocating for people who are wrongly incarcerated at the Innocence Project. She has dedicated her life to public service, helping those most in need and fighting for justice and equality for the most vulnerable members of our communities. She has now put all her efforts into fighting for her husband’s life, researching treatment options, booking doctor’s appointments, fundraising, taking care of Eric, and of course, being an amazing mom. After a lifetime of helping others, now Jane is the one who needs help.
Jane and Eric are moving forward with these treatments without thinking of the expenses — which are frankly beyond their means — because Eric’s life depends on it. That’s why they need your help.
Help Jane save her husband.
Help Sandy and Jake know their father, a kind, quick-witted man who lives for these boys — a phrase that brings all that much more urgency to this cause.
Help Eric live, for the twins. One day, they will thank you.
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Thank you for considering a donation. But even if you can’t donate, please help us by spreading the word across your social media channels using the hashtags #ForTheTwins, #glioblastoma, and #braincancer.
The Friends and Family of Eric Goldman and Jane Fox