In the beginning of 2017 my Dad, Mark, was diagnosed with glioblastoma brain cancer. Glioblastomas are tumors that are highly malignant (cancerous) and reproduce quickly since they are supported by a large network of blood vessels.
The first step in treatment was a procedure to relieve pressure on his brain, and safely remove as much tumor as possible through surgery. Glioblastomas are very difficult to completely remove and this one is growing near the parts of the brain that control important functions such as language and coordination.
Mark has since undergone two tumor removal surgeries within that same year along with radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
We have been blessed that his current treatment plan has been helping in decreasing and stabilizing the size of his recurrent tumor, but his doctor has already told us that Mark is no longer eligible to receive any more surgeries or radiation treatment. That being said, another tumor has appeared in his spine, which is unusual for this cancer, but unsurprising as this type of disease is very aggressive and difficult to treat.
After the second surgery his quality of life has decreased. It has left Mark without the ability to speak full sentences, process information, or even undertake simple tasks ( bathing, eating, dressing, etc.) alone, and he thus needs the continuous aid of his loving family members and friends.
I love my Dad very much and it pains me, and my family, to see him so weak and confined to the house during so many days of the week. It has drained him, and he will often cry out of depression and frustration.
Most recently, he has begun to lose mobility on his right side. To get around he now depends on the use of walkers or a wheelchair.
My plan is to get him out of the house and away from the chilly east coast and to a place of warmth and beauty – California - which has been one of Mark’s favorite places to visit. This may be his last chance to travel and we want to give him a chance to get out while he is still partially mobile. He is longing to stand on a beach and watch a sunset.
We have family in California and this will most likely be the last time they get to spend time with Mark. It will mean so much to be able to get the family together to show Mark a good time – not to mention to help me and my Mom, Bert, get away from the day-to-day stress.
I’m reaching out to ask for your help. Please consider a donation of any size to help my Dad and my family take one last trip together. If we are blessed with receiving more than the vacation costs, your donations will also help cover basic living expenses and current and future medical costs. Mark, who has once been the financial supporter to our household, is now only getting by on permanent disability checks, which don’t amount to much in the scope of medical bills and daily living expenses. My Mom works two (sometimes 3) jobs to help keep a steady income. Meanwhile, I split my day working a part time job and caring for my Dad with the help of his parents.
The trip is scheduled for the week of March 29th to April 4th.
Please let this wish come true and help Mark see his last sunset surrounded by the love of his family. Give him this moment to feel alive, because after all, "to live would be an awfully big adventure."
On behalf of Mark and our family, I thank you from my heart.
(1) All donors will recieve a hand written thank you card regardless of amount or date of donation.
(2) The following incentives are only for those whom donate by 03/29/18 - as we must know the amount of donors to purchase gifts for.
(3) Should something occur, the donations will be put to other means including basic living expenses, medical costs, and funeral costs.
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