On September 28, Julie had some fairly extensive surgery to repair an old injury. Her mother, Sara Jo Phelps, had originally come to stay and care for Julie until she had recuperated from her surgery. Just a few days after Julie’s surgery, her mother had to be rushed to the hospital, and sadly they found out that she was terminally ill with cancer. Julie’s mother passed away the day after Christmas. From the end of September until Julie’s mother passed away, Julie, like any child of a terminally ill parent, pretty much totally ignored her own health, which is totally understandable, and impressive. By January 2, Julie's health went very sour, due to leakage coming from her intestines and bowel, and she had to be taken to the hospital. Julie actually died on January 2, but thankfully they were able to bring her back. However, after this horrifying episode, her internal organs did shut down, and it has taken a grave toll on her health. One thing that has been very serious is how poor her circulation has gotten, due to medication she had to be on. And because of her circulation being so bad, Julie lost her right leg below the knee and half of her left foot. Rehab will be a long process.
Fast forward to now, practically three months’ later, and 12 surgeries later. Julie is continuing to show the strength of mind and character that she has. And part of this strength comes from her amazing husband, Mark, and their wonderful daughter Sydney. Julie continues to be hospitalized, started at one facility and then she was transferred to another hospital, and although her family and her keep praying she will be able to be released and to start rehab, it has not occurred as of yet. Julie will be sent to a rehab facility once her internal organs start functioning correctly.
What I thought all of us who are friends of the Gaskills could do is start a fundraiser to help with whatever medical bills are not being covered. We can all appreciate what the total of medical bills would be after three months, and GoFund is a perfect avenue to use as a fundraiser, to show our support for this amazing couple. Since it is still not known when Julie will be released, this fund can remain open for at least the next two months, if not longer.
I have seen the outpouring of love for Julie and Mark through FaceBook posts, and I know we would all love to show them what they mean to everyone. So if you would like to help with this fundraiser, I would be very thankful.
Let us continue to pray for Julie and her family that she will be in rehab in the not-so-distant future, and will be starting a new phase in her life.
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- Candice Verbic
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