Mark Huckeby's Proton Therapy

Sixteen years ago our father was diagnosed with stage four terminal cancer.  After being accepted into a clinical trial, we were able to eradicate the tumor and the cancer has been in remission.  Four months ago we received the news that his cancer has returned, in the same spot and far more aggressive than before. It is terminal and a stage four.  The cancer is located in his jaw area, tonsils, and right lymph node.  We were told there were more trials and that we could go with incredibly aggressive chemotherapy to prepare for the trials. Radiation is not an option because he was hit so aggressively before that his body has reached it's limit and wouldn't be able to handle any more radiation in this life time. With many ups and downs and having every severe side effect possible from the three types of chemo, our dad has continued on with strong faith that he can survive this illness.  We have recently found out that he was not a candidate for the trials as we had thought and that all the doctors could do was make him "comfortable" until the cancer ultimately took his life. This was completely heartbreaking to hear but it didn't break his spirit. We refuse to let this cancer take away someone who means the world to so many. For the last couple months they have him on Palliative care, with a goal to shrink the tumor and help keep him comfortable enough to participate in day to day life.
This was a low blow for the family UNTIL our mother researched every option out there and discovered proton beam therapy. Our parents have met with the doctors and we received the news that not only is our father a perfect candidate and already accepted into the program, but the proton therapy would ERADICATE the tumor completely. Integris Cancer Institute is officially taking over his chemotherapy and the doctors are working to SAVE HIS LIFE instead of just making him comfortable until the end. The issue that our family has run into is that proton therapy is not covered by insurance.  His insurance company as well as the Native American Tribe have denied coverage because it is not a "conventional form of treatment." They consider it too experimental and prefer him to use conventional radiation therapy, which he is not eligible for. This is our ray of light; our silver lining; our last hope. 
A little bit of background on our dad so that you can see why he is so important in our lives.  After his diagnosis 16 years ago, he had a stroke that led to a heart attack that ultimately led to congestive heart failure.  A couple of years later, while riding his motorcycle one evening he was hit from behind by a driver that was under the influence.  The driver did not stop, but instead flung our dad into oncoming traffic. If it had not been for a driver that stopped and dragged our dad to safety, he might not be here at all. In August of 2017, he went into the hospital for pancreatitis that turned septic. Obviously, our dad has nine lives and obviously,  he is a fighter.  Him and our mom have been together for 35 years; she would be lost without him.  He has three kids, a daughter in law, and one granddaughter. He has a family that depends on him and his granddaughter isn't ready to lose her "Pop" anytime soon. 
To support the family through this time (since the chemotherapy is effective but still kicking his behind) our mom started working two jobs and his daughter moved home to help. Our family has been keeping this matter private for the last four months, but has no choice in other efforts to fund proton therapy. 32144648_1534291229299613_r.jpeg
Our dad needs more time. More time to walk his daughter down the aisle, to see his youngest son graduate college, to watch his oldest son and wife grow their family, and to continue each day with the woman of his dreams.  The proton therapy is $35,000 and as we have stated, it's our last hope.  It's our ray of light in this otherwise pitch black situation. The time is ticking for his sessions to start and we need the funds to start his sessions as soon as possible so that the tumor does not grow back to its original size and undo all the progress that the intense rounds of chemotherapy has done.  We have to have a sizable down payment before treatments can start. They are wanting to start the therapy AS SOON AS POSSIBLE and we just cannot move forward without the help of kind hearted people. This is all we have, it is our absolute last hope in saving our dad's life.  This is an urgent plea from our family.  Losing a parent is hard for anyone and losing a parent too early is even harder. 
Thank you all in advance for taking the time to read our story! There is so much love and kindness in the world, thank you all in advance for sharing some of it with our family! We hope everyone has a blessed day! 32144648_1534291272129918_r.jpeg
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Bailey Huckeby 
Oklahoma City, OK
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