When you think of an exemplary man, you think of a man with the best combination of strength, patience, compassion and pure intellectual wit. A man of faith who is selfless and finds joy in others’ happiness and successes. A provider, a supporter and someone who loves without conditions. That is my dad.
My dad had 3 sons from a previous marriage when he met my mom. And my mom had us 3 girls. Very Brady Bunch-ish! Without question, he stepped up to the plate to raise my two sisters and me as his very own in the absence of our biological father. Taught us what it was like to receive love that is not built only on words said but actions shown, “Talk is cheap!”
And now, amongst his many roles, he is a fighter, fighting his toughest battle yet, Stage IV metastasized Prostate Cancer that has spread to his pelvis, ribs, stomach and there are new findings in his neck.
During the beginning of his chemotherapy treatments in the Spring of 2018, he disclosed to his employer of his need to step away one day every three weeks due to his illness and treatments. He confided in the President of the bank where he was Senior Vice President that he would like to keep this confidential as he still had the passion and ability to work as usual and that it would keep him going as he has always been a hardworking man and did not seek pity.
Within that same week, he was unexpectedly called into a room of Board Executives to be told that they were letting him go for a miscommunication that went unreported, which was false but hard to refute.
My dad, with my mom by his side, tried to seek legal action but the bank refused the Settlement Letter, knowing that a trial would run lengthy and would probably be too hard to beat.
All the while receiving multiple sessions of chemotherapy, having had many ultrasounds, PET & CT Scans, constant blood workups, a severe case of shingles that had him hospitalized for two weeks and is now starting radiation since chemo at this time will most likely bring the shingles back which would be life threatening in his delicate state.
His fight has continued faithfully to keep life as normal as possible for himself but mostly for others around him, anxiously knowing that his life savings are very quickly depleting. And to this day, he has interviewed for many jobs with the hopes to continue working even while undergoing all that he has but gets shut down for being “overqualified”, though more than willing to take whatever he can get.
And in this fight, there is my mom who has endured every bit of pain with him. Being his biggest cheerleader and the best caretaker. Never missing a beat and always anticipating the next step, fighting her way through referrals and scheduling, by his side for every single appointment, and making sure his nutrition is as clean and healthy as possible. Most times, forgetting that her own health and wellbeing must also come first. A true example of “for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health.”
The medical bills have now exceeded $20,000 in just 2018 and unfortunately, there is much more to come with the radiation treatments that start on February 26th, future testing and further treatment. The drive to and from radiation alone will be 1.5 hours each way, 5 days a week for a month.
So on behalf of our family, I am humbly asking for financial help to facilitate his treatments and to alleviate the monetary stresses that come with fighting cancer while supporting a family. It has taken a lot to get us to the point of reaching out to others for this kind of help and I’m sure it pains my dad to do so but if I could take even the smallest of his and my mom’s worries away, I know that it would help a big amount. No amount is too small in efforts to lessen the burdens and allow him a more peaceful quality of life during this time of healing. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
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- Alicia Speight
- Veronica Leon
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