Helping Hand for Josh Villebrun

Here is a little about Josh.

He has struggled with mysterious health conditions his whole life. At a young age he shocked his doctors when they had to diagnose him with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.  However this didn't stop him from pursuing his dream of becoming a cop. He was one of the youngest Officers in the Bureau of Indian Affairs to be promoted to Lieutenant.  He has always dedicated his life to helping others, not only in Law Enforcement, but also as an EMT on both the Bois Forte and Tower Area Ambulance Services. He served the Bois Forte reservation for several years before being reluctantly forced into an early retirement, at 32.

He is selfless, courageous and a fighter through and through. 

His recent medical diagnosis started back in July of 2017 when he started having dizzy spells and blackouts often causing distress and trouble walking. 

A few months later, in September, his local doctors could no longer help him, so he was referred to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN.  He was told at this time that he needed to go on medical leave.

From October to December 2017, he spent six weeks meeting with several doctors and specialists, having tests run to find a reason for his failing health and help treat his symptoms. He was ultimately diagnosed with severe autonomic neuropathy and severe peripheral neuropathy in his feet, legs, and hands. 

January 2018 he made the incredibly heartbreaking decision to take medical retirement from his position as a Lieutenant with the BIA. 

Then this past spring, his health took a turn for the worse.  He suffered a deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, and staff infection.  Essentially his sickness made his his blood very toxic which attacked his organs.  He was placed in the ICU at Saint Mary’s, at Essentia in Duluth, unable to breath on his own.  His family was told his chances of surviving were slim. Then a miracle happend, and he came through at the end of May. 

His recovery was miraculous, but the celebration was short lived. In July he found a blister on his foot. Due to his body never fully recovering, his healing process is significantly low, so the blister became worse and eventully very infected. He had several consultants with various specialists, but a staff infection set into his bone.  He was told that amputation would be the only life saving option.

September of 2018, he received an amputation, below the left knee.  

All of these have induced financial and emotional stress on him and his family. He has essentially given up everything to fight for his life.  He finally agreed to put his pride on hold and allow his friends and family to try and help him recover financially. 

We have no doubt that he will come through this hardship as he has with any other, with a smile on his face telling some kind of silly jokes, or laughing at himself. However, he needs some help and encouragment. He is such an amazing person and has gone through so much in his short life.  Any support you give will be greatly appreciated, and he and his family will be forever grateful. Thank you.
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    • $40 
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  • Shannon Geshick 
    • $25 
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    • $30 
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Organizer and beneficiary

Joanna Boyer 
Organizer
Tower, MN
Josh Villebrun 
Beneficiary
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