Let me start by first saying that I hope you all are having a fantastic day and are looking forward to the coming autumn season! My husband Ron and I are both doing incredible and are enjoying every day that comes our way! Unfortunately, we have found out some distressing news that concerns my half-brother Paul Patten; though with all the trials and tribulations that we have been through together, we consider ourselves ‘full-blooded’ brother and sister. Thanks to my brother he has helped me, as well as other family members, grow into the person I am today. Paul is twelve years older than me at 50 years old and is a caring, understanding, loving, and a very unique person I have known throughout my life. Paul has not only looked out for me and his other loved ones, but he also advocates for the rights and privileges that the LGBTQ community deserve as a proud gay man! Though at times it was difficult for him as an openly gay man in decades past, he did his own things that made him happy; he even taught me girly things like how many times a girl should brush her hair, helped with my makeup, and also gave me fashion tips that I remember to this day. Paul even has a great sense of humor, even today with all the issues he is going through. I vividly remember when he once told me that if we both find a man and get married at the same time, that his dress was going to be bigger and better than mine! I still laugh to this day about that! Well, though I got married before him since same-sex marriage was not legal at the time in Massachusetts, he eventually did marry his partner of ten years in 2004, and though he did not wear a dress that day, he looked so handsome in his suit. I was so happy to see that they were able to finally tie the knot and see the look of love in their eyes for each other. Through the years, he and his partner have lived life their way and have enjoyed the ride the whole time; even after the receiving the bad news that I hinted to earlier L
In January 2016, Paul was diagnosed with Hepatitis C (Hep C) which his doctors feel he contracted during a blood transfusion he required after a severe accident in 1986. This transfusion occurred well before blood banks started screening for the virus in donated blood, which began to occur during the 90’s. You can learn more about pre-1990 blood transfusions at the following link:
Though he did receive treatment to help ‘cure’ the Hep C virus, it was not enough. Even with the treatments and added lifestyle changes that included exercise, diet, and quitting drinking, he ended up in the hospital in December 2017 due to pain in his stomach and legs. After days of having tests in the hospital, it was revealed that the virus progressed to Cirrhosis of the liver. You can learn more about this disease at the following link:
Since that discovery, he has been in and out of the hospital due to fluid buildup in his body, further tests, as well as additional ‘treatments.’ It had gotten so bad that we all thought we were going to lose him this past February at the age of 50, which would have been the same age that his father passed away from cancer. Due to this disease, Paul is now on disability, has trouble walking so is now using a wheelchair (which he hates!), and his body is failing in more ways than one. To make things worse, just this past week during his weekly checkup (August 29, 2018), his doctors informed him that his kidneys are starting to fail and if he does not get a liver transplant soon, he may not have much longer to live.
However, despite all the hurt he has suffered through and all the negative news he keeps receiving, he is happy and chipper as can be! He has the will to live and is doing everything possible to beat this disease and live life as best as he can. Because of his tenacity to live and to help alleviate some of the cost burdens he is facing such as medical expenses, utilities, food, transportation, and others, I am starting this GoFundMe page with the hope of helping my older brother. Additionally, if the inevitable does happen, and Paul, unfortunately, loses his battle with this disease, your donations will instead help with any funeral expenses that his husband may not be able to handle since there are no life insurance policies available.
For those of you that know me, I try to help out those when possible, and this is one of those times. This time, however, it is for my own flesh and blood. To be honest, I am scared for my brother and have cried many times as I see him pretty much dying before my eyes. I am hoping that you will all find it your hearts to help him and our family during this time.
Thank you so very much for your time!
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