Josh Steckler is 13 years old and suffers from hereditary pancreatitis. This is a rare genetic condition which causes severe abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and can lead to pancreatic cancer. In 2012 Josh underwent a total pancreatectomy with an Islet cell transplant. The surgery took 14 hours to completely remove the pancreas and spleen. Two months after his surgery Josh developed an infection from the procedures which caused complications that require him to receive ongoing treatments at the Mayo Clinic.
Josh’s sister, Elly, also suffers from this hereditary disease and is going through the same procedures and complications. Their father Mitch developed pancreatic cancer and passed away one month prior to Josh’s transplant.
There is no cure for this disease. The only treatment is pancreatic enzyme supplements to treat maldigestion, insulin to treat diabetes, analgesics and narcotics to control the pain.
Erron Collins, a Bismarck State College basketball player, met Josh Steckler through a mutual friend. Josh relates to Erron through basketball and the fact that Erron had a Wilm’s Tumor, Stage IV, when he was 4 years old. They share similar experiences of doctor visits, hospital and clinic care, and painful treatments at such a young age. This special connection will last a lifetime.
Through all this pain and suffering Josh remains a beautiful spirited young man who just wants to live a normal life. He enjoys playing basketball, video games, marble comics, and listening to music.
Thank you for your sponsorship and support of Jammin’ 4 Josh.