Cancer treatment/Brain Surgery fund

I have a cancerous condition called Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis.  The doctors at Barrow Neurological Institute have determined that the condition is a result of the 18 months I spent in Iraq during the first Gulf War from 1989 to 1991. I am a former Special Forces Solider who was linguist certified in Iraqi Syrian Language and spent the majority of my time deployed in and around Bagdad.  This condition has been linked to the amount of toxins, oil residue and air pollution I inhaled due to the burning of oil wells and other explosive toxins I was exposed to while serving there.  This condition is very rare, especially in adults and virtually no one has been able to survive without a pitutary gland.  I will have life long medical issues above and beyond this next surgery. 

The next surgery will be scheduled shortly and I will be headed to Johns Hopkins University for the surgery.  A tumer has regrown and I will need to have an additional brain surgery.  A different procedure is going to be used to replace the pitutary cavity with an synthetic material rather than replace it with some of my own tissue.  There is only one doctor in the country who is skilled at this procedure.  Due to that, I will have to go to Maryland for the procedure and all costs incured will not be covered by my insurance.  The total for the surgery, time in intensive care, and all related treatments will be near $1.5 million.  The insurance company will consider $90,000 "out of network" and I will need to pay for that myself.  I have approached the VA, but the VA will only pay for conditions we can prove without a doubt, were caused during an international conflict.  Since this condition manifested long after I left the military, they will not admit it was caused due to my military exposure and thus not cover any of the costs.  At this point my family will not be able to fund any portion of this procedure.  We are tapped out as we have spent all we have on the previous procedures. 

My previous medical issues include the removal of the  majority of my left lung, an initial brain surgery to remove the first tumor and my entire pitutary gland, numerous biopsys, tests, spinal taps, bone marrow removals and radiation and other cancer treatments.  I am hoping this new procedure will last and I can finally put some of the medical procedures to rest.

These funds will be used to cover the costs that are not covered by insurance and will help my family while I am away receiving this surgery and treatment. I want to thank all of those who supported me in the past and for anyone who feels led to help in the future.  I especially want to thank Joe Pequeno from CBS channel 5 in Phoenix, AZ for his support in telling my story.  The news story he has created can be viewed at

God Bless and thank you very much

Aaron Bentley
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Aaron Bentley 
Anthem, AZ