Jack’s Journey

Meet sweet Jack, he will turn 2 years old soon. He has been battling numerous unknown infections since last November (2017). He has seen countless doctors in attempt to determine a diagnosis. Jack has undergone 2 invasive surgeries in his neck. He is continuing indefinite treatment at Mayo Clinic www.mayoclinic.org 
My name is Annie, I am a close friend of Jennifer (momma) going on 18 years.  We have supported each other through the ebbs and flows from our days at Augsburg College to being neighbors in Phoenix and Las Vegas. We now share in the great joys and angst of motherhood with similar aged children. As one of her closest friends I am asking that you take a moment to learn about Jack’s Journey. 

Jack’s parents are Bob and Jennifer "Suzy,” Martin.  He has an older sister Charlotte (5yo) who will start Kindergarten in Lakeville this fall.  William is his older brother (3yo) is bright and charming.
After a nap one day in February, Jack woke up with a large lump on the right side of his neck.  He was brought immediately to ER and was admitted for an unknown infection.  Jack was hospitalized for five days, while the doctors ran countless tests.  A biopsy determined that Jack had a rare infection that manifested itself in his lymph nodes.  They quickly learned that this infection was resistant to antibiotics.  

While living in Phoenix a team of doctors determined that the best course of treatment would be to surgically remove the infection.  Jack had his first surgery in April.  Everyone was hopeful that this surgery would take care of this nasty infection.  

Although his wound began to heal, Jack was never quite himself.  Bob and Suzy became increasingly concerned.  This concern led them to consider a cross-country move back to Minnesota, in order to be near better healthcare for Jack's condition.  

In less than a week, they packed up their home and headed back to Minnesota.  Bob put in his notice at work where he was well established in a commissions position. Suzy furiously got the house on the market. The day they were set to leave The Martin’s were victims of a home invasion. It was devastating to say the least, identification cards, valuables and family heirlooms were stolen.  No one was hurt but it takes a long time to heal from a violationg act like that. 

A few weeks after returning home, Jack's infection returned on the right side.  The doctors advised them to let the infection drain.  Shortly after the right side flared up, Jack's infection spread to the left side of his neck.  Jack was then admitted to Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis.   https://www.childrensmn.org/  After several days in Children’s Hospital, the team of doctors told Bob and Suzy that the infections weren't related to one another. Jack was discharged on antibiotics and was to follow-up outpatient in two weeks. 

This didn't sit well.  The following morning Bob and Suzy made the trip down to Mayo Clinic in Rochester.  Jack was once again admitted to the hospital.  This time was different.  A team of doctors quickly rallied around Jack and came up with an immediate plan to operate.  They believed that the doctors in Phoenix unknowingly left a significant amount of infection behind.  The Mayo surgeons decided that operating on Jack for a second time was mandatory.
After an eight hour procedure, Bob and Suzy were able to go back into recovery to see Jack.  They were stunned by the extent of the surgery.  Jack had significant disfigurement and extensive incisions.  The surgical team said that Jack's case was one of the worst they'd ever seen.  The infection began taking over his entire neck.  The surgeons were forced to remove two salivary glands, numerous lymph nodes and a portion of his neck muscle.  Sadly, one of Jack's facial nerves was sacrificed in the process.  This has caused paralysis on his left side, which makes it difficult for him to eat and show off his infectious smile.   
Since this began back in November, both Bob and Suzy have missed many days of work.  Bob resigned from his job, and Suzy was forced to take a break from her teaching.  Fortunately, to date Bob was able to find a new job and Suzy continues to juggle teaching online course to students overseas in China. The family has incurred a large amount of hospital bills, which has been both challenging and stressful.  Many of Jack’s tests are not covered by insurance and the family had to switch insurance with the move back to MN. Jack is currently on powerful medications that require frequent blood tests and doctor's visits.  The family continues to make weekly trips down to Mayo, which will continue indefinitely.

I know that Bob and Suzy are humbled by any gesture, act of kindness, prayers and positive thoughts. They have lifted Jack and The Martin Family up and will forever be appreciated. 

You can help just by sharing or forwarding this on! WITH ALL SINCERITY, ANNIE BARRETT
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Fundraising team: Annie Barrett (4)

Annie Barrett 
Raised $175 from 4 donations
Champlin, MN
Robert Martin 
Robert Martin 
Team member
Raised $1,000 from 1 donation
Jennifer Martin 
Team member

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