Cancer - Stem Cell Transplant

My name is Jack Avery, and I live in Stafford Springs, Ct. I'm pictured with my two grandchildren, Addie and Brady. I live with my wife Beverly, and our son Dan. Our daughter, Amanda, is married to our son-in-law Andy, and is the mother of both of our grandchildren.
My story as it relates to my current situation started nine years ago when I was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and leukemia. Since my diagnosis was the first of its kind, my treatment was somewhat untested. I was given chemo for six months, with two years of maintenance chemo. I felt good afterward, but my platelet counts have continually dropped for the last seven years. Back in April the numbers hit 40,000. The average person's platelet count is a minimum of 140,000. I was treated with a steroid for three weeks to boost the platelets, with no improvement. I was then given chemo for four weeks, again with no improvement. I had bone marrow taken to test for cancer activity and it was definitely active.
My oncologist apologized for having to tell me that my marrow was so badly damaged that I have one treatment option, and that option is a stem cell transplant. The cause of my current disease was some of the chemo I had received nine years ago.
My wife and I met with the doctor who specializes in transplants at Yale New Haven Hospital, in New Haven Ct. His name is Dr. Dennis Cooper. Dr Cooper prescribed a two-cycle regimen of chemo and rest, taking four weeks for each cycle, then another bone marrow test to determine if I am ready for the transplant procedure. My brother was tested and found to be a match, which was a huge answer to prayer.
Last week, on the evening of the fifth day of chemo, I developed a fever. As a result I went to the emergency room and spent the next five days getting treated with anti-biotics in the hospital. I am very hopeful that I can avoid a repeat of that situation.
Financially this is my situation. I have been unable to work since receiving my diagnosis on July 18, 2014. For those who might want to look up just what it is that I have you can check out: Myelodysplastic Syndrome. I used up the few hours of sick leave and vacation time that I had in a couple weeks. The week before I was diagnosed, I sold my primary vehicle, planning on using the proceeds toward a replacement vehicle. Because I no longer can work, those proceeds are being used to meet co-pays, transportation, and daily expenses. I've received a grant from the Leukemia Foundation to cover some of my insurance co-pays, but not enough for all of them. I expect to be out of work for at least the next six months. During that time my vehicle funds will be gone, and I will not have the income needed to cover all the travel expenses that will be incurred. I'm sure that there will be routine living expenses that will be very difficult to cover without my income for the next six months. I'm not sure how to put a dollar figure on what I will need to replace my wages, replace my vehicle fund, etc. but my best estimate is $25,000.
My wife Beverly and I appreciate anything that anyone can do to help us out in this time of need.
Thank you very much in advance for considering our need.
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Organizer

Andy Brummel 
Organizer
Stafford Springs, CT
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