Hello everyone, my name is Linda.  I have had the pleasure of knowing my friend, Rich, for 6 years.  We actually worked together at the same place of business.  As all friendships do, ours started out slow but as we got to know each other better we realized we had a great deal in common - from foods to sports to great conversations our friendship grew and grew.  Over these 6 years, we have become best friends.  In May of this year, I received a call that no one, friend or family, wants to receive, Rich was diagnosed with Stage 3 malignant melanoma.  There is nothing that we would not do for each other and that is why I have started this Go Fund Me page.

Though it has only been a short period of time since the diagnosis, their financial worries have begun.  Rich has been out of work since May.

Any monies raised will be used for medical bills, which have started to mount, treatment and living expenses.

Rich's Story:

Rich is 59 years old and has been married to his beautiful wife, Lori, for 32 years.  He has two children (Alex and Scott), a son-in-law (Joe) and a grandchild (Aidan).  Aidan, who is one years old, is the apple of Rich's eye and seeks Rich out whenever he enters the room.  Often Aidan will sit on Rich's lap watching videos or just enjoying the comfort of Rich's arm.  Rich's goal since the diagnosis is to watch Aidan enter the 1st grade.

For quite some time Rich had what I will call a mole on his right chest, which he thoughts was nothing.  In April, Aidan accidentally scratched that mole.  The mole started to bleed.  It would scab over and appear to heal but then when he showered it would open up, start to bleed, then scab over and continued to do that.  In May, he made an appointment to see a dermatologist.

The dermatologist did not think the mole looked good and did a biopsy.  Three days later Rich and his wife were told that the biopsy showed metastasized malignant melanoma.  Rich was then referred to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA.

A PET scan was ordered and surgery was scheduled to remove the tumor.  In early June, the tumor was removed.  Rich and his wife were told that they were hopeful that they had "got it all" and that the cancer had not spread.

In mid-June, a cat scan showed that there were small nodules in his lungs.  A month later another cat scan was performed to check if the nodules had grown or remained the same.  The scan showed the nodules had grown but they were unsure if it was lung cancer or the melanoma that had spread to the lungs.  Rich was told the best diagnosis would be lung cancer not melanoma because lung cancer had more available treatments.

In early August, another cat scan was performed which confirmed the nodules were still growing.

In late August, surgery was performed and a biopsy was done.  Two nodules were extracted by removing the upper part of his left lung and it was confirmed that the melanoma had in fact spread to his lungs.  After the nodules were biopsied, Rich's cancer diagnosis was changed from Stage 3 to Stage 4, which was devastating to the family.

To date, Rich is recouping at home and awaiting treatment in a couple of weeks.

Treatment will be immunotherapy.  There are two choices of which each has a 30-40% success rate (60-70% failure rate).

The therapies to treat melanoma have come a long way but still the outlook is not good.  A 60-70% failure rate is not promising.

Right now everything is up in the air as to which treatment he will receive, how he will feel, how they will make ends meet since he is not working and most of all how to accept the diagnosis.

Again, any monies raised will be used for medical bills, immunotherapy treatment and living expenses.

Thank you so much for reading this page.  Any donations will be greatly appreciated.  Please share this Go Fund Me page with your family and friends and place it on your social network page,

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Organizer and beneficiary

Linda Plante 
Peabody, MA
Richard Myers