Friends Forever: Support for Gage

This is my story of Gage. 

The first time I met Gage, we were sitting across from each other on top of washing machines in our college dormitory building so that people wouldn't steal our laundry. We began discussing the book he was reading. He looked like a teddybear with his bushy beard, and he was easy to talk to. 

After a short three years, Gage had become an integral part of our group of close friends from our small Honors program. We would eat every single meal together and spend every evening together. We became a family. 

Gage was and is an exceptional student;  he earned his way through our small state college by achedemic scholarship and by tutoring students in science. He majored in the hardest subject our university offered, Chemistry, and eventually graduated summa cum laude. Since graduating college, Gage has gone on to graduate school, and is currently earning a PhD in Chemistry as well as teaching at the undergraduate level. 
Our close-knit group of friends has spread to the four winds, but even after so long we still make every possible effort to reuinite every year at Christmas time. 

Fast forward four Christmas reunions since college, and it was time to see everyone again. When I saw Gage (for the first time in a year) I knew something was wrong. His bushy beard was gone, as was the hair on his head, and he was thin. Although he didn't tell us and never complained, our good friends could also see what I saw: our Gage was sick.

One thing that makes Gage unique is that he never asks for help, and he never asks for sympathy. When you meet him, it is easy to miss the fact that he lost one of his feet to soft-tissue sarcoma at the age of two. The cancer that took his foot has returned. Gage now has stage IV sarcoma, which means the cancer has metastasized to multiple areas in his body. At the age of 24, he has a struggle that I pray no one reading this will ever have to endure. Even now, he is still working as hard as ever to obtain his PhD and to keep up with his classes.

And so my friends, the purpose of this fundraiser is to do something that Gage would never do for himself - I'm asking for your help to raise money for our wonderful friend for a much needed and deserved trip. I want to raise funds in order to send Gage on a vacation to wherever he wants to go, with any additional funds going toward medical bills or cancer research. In this time when it seems like we are powerless to help, we can still pray, and we can show him our support by donating. 

During my seven years as his friend, he has been what all of us want to be: responsible at all times, self-supporting, indefatigable in his pursuit of his research and education. He is kind and brave. He faces this tall hurdle as he has faced all others, with laughter and love for others. Help us give him a gift, to say thank you and we love you.
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    • $8 
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    • $25 
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Organizer and beneficiary

Summer Hill 
Tulsa, OK
Barbara Coltrain 
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