Leonard is the father of three wonderful children (Anthony-32, Jonathan-17 and Crystal-16), two of which are in the middle of considering which colleges they want to attend. He is a loving husband and a gentle grandfather. His only care in this life has been the well-being of the people he is close to and he has dedicated himself to that very cause.
Leonard’s cancer diagnosis has literally crippled his family, rendering him completely unable to work and relying solely on the income of his hard working wife. Rosa is an in-home caretaker for sick individuals. She works 6 days a week, two of which are 12 hour shifts, earning Nevada's minimum wage. Unfortunately, a minimum wage job will NEVER be enough to keep up with the financial toll this disease takes on a family, no matter the hours put in. With only Medicaid to fall back on, he needs help; THEY need help.
This is where I stepped in. Four days ago I created a GoFundMe account to attempt to ease the burden of the medical bills piling up. With the generosity of so many of our family, friends and even a couple of strangers, we have already to raised almost $4,000!!! This is HUGE and will help Leonard afford his first rounds of meds while allowing the kids to get to their first day of school without more than friends, gossip and homework to occupy their minds. This battle has just begun, however, and they started three steps behind. My goal may be lofty but there are so many things to consider: putting food on the table, living expenses, Jonathan and Crystal’s needs while in school and, of course, the insurmountable amount of debt they are bound to see. In the meantime, we are working with his doctors to see what the next plan of action will be. As of now, he has undergone a colostomy, and is waiting for his liver to be stable enough for him to begin chemo. I am flying to Nevada today in order to be with him for the beginning of his journey. Through this process I am bound to learn more technical terms about cancer than I had ever hoped (I will be sure to pass that knowledge along),but I also hope to provide a bit of love and comfort to my brother and his family during this difficult time.
Let this update serve as a huge “Thank You” from all of us. Thank you for the kind donations, the words of encouragement, the shares on social media and for having us in your thoughts. Every ounce of every one of those things helps.
Please, please continue to share Leonard’s Family Support Fund with your community.
It really does take a village!
- Mimi Somerman
- Prter Knecht
- Jean Edwards
- Heidi Othman
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