The below description is from our original campaign. We sorrowfully report that Blaine passed away on March 3rd, 2016 at 3:20pm. He was loved by many and is missed by all. __________________ As some of you know, Blaine Illingworth was diagnosed with metastatic colon cancer on April 20th, 2014, Easter Sunday. Life became very complicated due to an emergency colostomy surgery on June 1st for an obstructed bowel. 3 more surgeries followed over the next year.
Blaine became hypersensitive to the various chemotherapy drugs being used on him this past summer and had to quit chemotherapy. He started a clinical drug trial in Pittsburgh in late August at the UPMC, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He traveled to Pittsburgh and stayed there alone for a week out of every 3. In December we found out that the trial drugs were not working and that Blaine's tumors were spreading and growing. There are now tumors on his adrenal glands, gall bladder, liver, lymphatic system and his lungs. One in his right lung is pressing on the bronchiole leading into the middle lobe of the lung and has it blocked and partially collapsed. This has led to incessant coughing and constant shortness of breath.
We are now trying Lonsurf, newly approved specifically for metastatic colon cancer treatment, but the oncologists say it has about a 10% chance of remission. It is hugely expensive. Initially, after approval by the insurance company, we were told that it has a $3,000 co-pay. Fortunately, the Lord performed a small miracle and within an hour we were also approved for a grant to cover the first 3 months of co-pay. After that, we are on our own.
As some of you know, we are self-employed. We have spent our lives helping others here and in the third world, Haiti, Uganda, the Philippines, Ethiopia, and more, with too little thought for our own future. Our small savings are now depleted. We were able to clear 2014 with the financial assistance of many, but we are now experiencing a lack of work and increased expenses as treatments and other drug costs build up. Cough syrup alone is $40 a bottle. We are behind in our mortgage payments and Blaine is mostly unable to work even around the house as the cumulative effect of the treatments and the reduced lung function have left him with no energy. All contributions received will be used to pay delinquent bills, medical expenses and hopefully to get us ready to move into a smaller, more easily maintainable home.
If you are able to give to help us, we are grateful. If you have already given towards our lives, we are grateful. If you can pass this on to others, we are grateful. We are just grateful. We continue to serve others where and when we can with whatever resources the Lord grants.
Almighty GOD has met our needs over these last 18 months. We are looking to HIM for everything, body, soul, and spirit. We thank you for listening and prayerfully considering contributing to our expenses.