Our friend, family member, colleague, Susan DeDionisio needs your help! This Gofundme has been started because so many people have asked how they can help. Susan has an extremely rare form of Blood Cancer that caused her to collapse in the Anchorage Providence Hospital 5 years ago when multiple clots came evident in her heart, lungs, arms, legs. Doctors were amazed when she not only survived but came out of approximately 22 minutes of CPR without brain damage. Susan was induced into a medical coma for 7 or 8 days to give her brain and the rest of her body time to stabilize and heal.
This is not something that will just go away. Susan has experienced a severe decrease in her mobility. She is unable to have a much-needed hip replacement & ankle and knee surgery that would help her mobility due to the cancer clotting blood issue she battles. While her family lives far way in the Lower 48, Susan will have to continue the fight against this cancer every single day for the rest of her life. Her Physicians, who discovered this are here in Alaska.
Susan's story is quite frankly unbelievable. Her sister has shared her experience on Susan's support page. www.facebook.com/teamsusandedionisio. Her words are powerful and moving:
"I still remember the night I received the phone call. That night changed me forever. A doctor told me they had lost Susan for 23 minutes. They weren't sure she would make it. If she survived, they weren't sure she would have any permanent damage. No words can describe it. Doctors told me they tried every drug known that night in trying to dissolve the deadly clot. The only thing that saved her was the drug she currently takes today. I've seen the battles she has endured since then. No one. Not her or anyone else should have to fight this hard to live. I know she would be the last one to ask for help. However, I don't know many people that can possibly afford a drug that is hundreds of dollars a month, let alone thousands. " ~Paula
First and foremost, please keep Susan in your heart and in your prayers, then consider helping offset her medical expenses and prescription drug costs with a donation. She has touched many lives with her outgoing, engaging (and a little bit nutty) personality. She has given so much of herself and her time to military families, cancer patients, wounded heroes, former students and their families, and countless others. Let's give something back and let her see how much love for her is out there.
Unfortunately, due to her condition, Susan had to medically retire from the job she loved programming memory making activities for the Department of Defense military & civilian families and will be losing her medical insurance by year's end. This is a critical time for Susan as the lifesaving and sustaining medication she has to take is currently almost $6000 a month. $6000!!! She's been working diligently to find other ways to offset the costs, but she is fast approaching the insurance deadline. At this time Medicare does not cover the cost of Arixtra, the only anti-clotting agent that has worked for her. She will keep everyone updated on her findings and other information on the Team Susan Dedionisio Facebook group. Please feel free to join her there.
All who know and love Susan know she is a devoted friend and advocate for those in need. If you are lucky enough to run into her and her oversized stuffed bear "COURAGE" I can positively guarantee you will never forget her. You can get to know Susan and Courage on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Courage-the-Bear-His-Adventures-467320750097626.
Please consider helping out our friend Susan by making a donation to help offset her medical costs and medication. Donations will be used to cover her medical bills and ongoing prescription drug costs.