In Support of the Barr Family

I am running this GoFundMe in support of my friend and coworker, Blake Barr. You can read more about what his son Blake "Jr." has been going through. Please consider supporting the family for their upcoming trip to Boston where Blake "Jr." will be undergoing his second brain surgery.  I just want them to be able to focus on Blake's health and get a hotel that is close to the hospital. Any contribution is most appreciated.
Thank you!

-Heather Walsh



Background


My son started having panic attacks when he was 9 years old, shortly after his mother died of breast cancer. In his first year of college, I received a call from the hospital near his campus. He had been face down in the snow after having had a seizure and was on life support since he could not breathe on his own. That was a one time event, or so we thought, until one day at the pet store where he worked he had another seizure and collapsed on the floor. After that, grand mal or tonic clonic seizures occurred about every three weeks. MRIs showed an area of damage in his brain that appeared to be consistent with an injury he had on a high school ski trip a few years before. The doctors spent months adjusting medicines until the worst seizures were under control, but eventually the medicines quit working and the seizures returned.

Further testing and more specialists revealed that all of the life events that correlated to his panic attacks and seizures were not the cause, but that he had a very slow growing brain tumor that had been the cause of all of these episodes throughout his life. Treatment changed and he had his first brain surgery, to remove the tumor, earlier this year.

For about two months he was seizure free, and then they started again with more frequency than before. The area where the tumor was touching the brain is damaged and has necrotic brain tissue that needs to be removed. Some good brain tissue will also have to be removed to ensure that all of the damaged tissue is gone and that it will not continue to spread.

Later this month he and I will be traveling up to Boston for his second brain surgery. We are very hopeful that this will at least stop further damage to his brain, even if he does have to remain on medication for the seizures. He will be at the hospital for one day of pre-op, then go into surgery three days later. We are not sure how long he will be in the hospital for recovery, but the time frame for his pre-op, operation, and post-op visits will be about three weeks provided everything goes well and there are no complications. He will be with me in a hotel whenever he is not at the hospital.

 So our plan is to fly up, get a hotel as close to the hospital as we can to try to minimize daily travel costs, and either fly back or rent a car if he is not able to fly once he is clear to return home. He just got his own apartment near our house so he can have some independence, and is really hopeful that this surgery will finally allow him to move forward with his life again.

I have also included a photo of him from right after the previous surgery. He gave us a great smile and immediately regretted it since they had to cut the jaw muscle as part of the operation.

Donations

 See top
  • Anonymous 
    • $25 
    • 16 d
  • Ronald Hodgkins 
    • $50 
    • 16 d
  • Diana Reed 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Kim Prescott 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 1 mo
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Heather Walsh 
Organizer
Brookline, MA
Ronald Barr 
Beneficiary
  • #1 fundraising platform

    People have raised more money on GoFundMe than anywhere else. Learn more

  • GoFundMe Guarantee

    In the rare case that something isn’t right, we will refund your donation. Learn more

  • Expert advice, 24/7

    Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more