Help with Danny's Surgery


Thank you for visiting this site to support my friend Danny Kelley in regards to his surgery - ileostomy. My name is Joe Denner and I have started this campaign to try to help the Kelleys deal with all of their out of pocket expenses that have been stacking up and that will continue for a season after the surgery.

It has been a long and difficult road for my good friend Danny over the last 20 years.

It started at age 28 with flu like symptoms. Not long after that he was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. It was a struggle right from the start. There was a lot of prednisone & several stays in the hospital. By age 29 he was told to have his colon removed. However, he felt he hadn't exhausted all measures so he held off. Over the next 12 years he tried various medications, diets (gluten free), and a lot of supplements. Meanwhile, their family grew to include 5 children (with Dad in the bathroom a lot).

Finally, at age 41, when they had just found out they were expecting their 6th child, Danny knew it was time to have surgical intervention. He had his colon removed in June 2003, with a pouch formed from his small intestine to avoid having an ileostomy (bag). The day of his surgery, the doctor told Janna (his wife) that he had an abscess internally at the junction between his small & large intestine. He said Danny may have Crohn's disease.

After having the pouch for 4 years, he began to have problems with abdominal pain and infections. After many scopes & different GI doctors, 2 years ago they officially diagnosed him with Crohns. They now know that they do not do the "pouch" surgery for Crohns patients.

The area formed is full of ulcers, scarring and narrowing. He has developed a complex fistula which is from ongoing problems with infection.

Danny has been in the hospital at least 3 times in the last 18 months and has been through an endless series of expensive doctor visits and medications.

His last full-time job ended January 31, 2018. Since then the Kelleys have been surviving on part time work that both Danny and Janna have been able to secure. Most of their earnings have gone to try to make a dent in the growing pile of medical bills, while keeping a growing family of eight afloat.

After experiencing what has often felt like endless months of debilitating pain, almost 24 hours per day, often going without sufficient sleep, and not being able to work full time, his only option to heal the fistula is to have a permanent ileostomy. He will have this surgery on August 29, 2018.


Surgery is scheduled for this Wednesday, August 29th.

For those of you not familiar with this procedure, the bottom line is that the surgery will create an opening in the abdomen for the discharge of body waste. A pouch will be attached that will allow him to manually dispose of the waste that will leave his body through this new opening.

The doctors expect that he will be in the hospital 4-6 days. This will be followed by 6-12 weeks of recovery. Speaking with a nurse who had this surgery 30 years ago and who has dealt with multiple patients  walking down the same road, Danny was told to expect that it will likely take a full year for him to get fully adjusted.

At this time they are not planning on doing a second surgery to remove the J pouch (bag), meaning it will be a permanent part of his life going forward. This will all depend on how Danny's recovery goes and how his body adjusts to this new arrangement.

One of the ongoing challenges that Danny will face is that he will need replacement bags weekly for the rest of his life! Another very stressful and costly piece of this puzzle will be the potential for ongoing medications.

To date, with all of the doctor visits , hospitalizations, and medications, the Kelleys have racked up medical bills exceeding $20,000 in out of pocket expenses. And with a recent visit to the Mayo clinic, multiple consultations re: surgery, the upcoming surgery, medications, travel and lodging, and other related expenses, we are projecting that they will be facing at least an additional $20,000 in costs.

This brings us to our total goal of $40,000.

Because Danny has been unable to sustain a full-time job, due to all the medical complications, they are currently on COBRA from his last employer. As many of you know, this can be very expensive, especially in this day of rising medical costs.

I ask that you pray for Danny for a successful surgery and for the stamina and patience to endure the next 6-12 months of recovery and adjustment that could be filled with many ups and downs.

Also, please pray for Janna and the children as they walk with Danny through these uncertain months ahead. This is most decidedly a family affair in which everyone has been and will be impacted.

Specifically pray that:
- there would be no leakage involving the J pouch
- there would be no defects with any of the products used/installed
- the inflammation in the early days will go away
- the wound/seal would heal properly
- potential set backs could be avoided
- ultimately Danny could be delivered from having to continue with medications.

Thank you very much for your prayers and financial assistance.

With grateful hearts on behalf of Danny, Janna, and all the children,
Joe Denner
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Organizer and beneficiary

Dan Kelley 
Dover, IL
Dan Kelley 

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