(Michael, Vicki and Mark at the Jersey Shore 1971)
Mark has been diagnosed with an inoperable form of prostate cancer (Stage 4) which has metastasized to his bones. He received this devastating diagnosis just prior to Christmas 2016.
My brother Mark is 56 years old, married, and has two young daughters, Rafaela and Nikole. He is a Wilmington, DE native and a St Marks HS graduate. After graduation, my brother moved to Athens, Greece where he lived for 17 years. His oldest daughter Mandy, 22, still resides in Greece. He has cherished memories of his time there and considers Athens his second home. Mark and his family live in Wilmington and attend Holy Trinity Church. After his diagnosis, Mark underwent various forms of treatment: hormone, radiation and chemotherapy in early 2017. Initially, the results were encouraging, his PSA was reduced (it went from 500 to 120.) Sadly, those results were short-lived, his PSA began to rapidly accelerate again.
Next, Mark began treatment with an experimental drug to stabilize his PSA. He was unable to continue that regimen as the side effects were detrimental with no real results.
Throughout all of these treatments Mark continued to work full time as a Commercial/Industrial Painter which is a physically demanding occupation. Mark never complained about his intense pain or missed a day of work. It was very important for him to stay productive and contribute to the well-being of his family.
Mark “re-started” chemotherapy in September. The current plan is a chemotherapy treatment every 3 weeks for a course of 6 treatments. He has completed one treatment to date. Currently (November 2017), Mark is unable to start the second treatment based on results of his weekly blood tests. He is hopeful that his numbers will improve so chemo can resume as soon as possible. Prior to his illness, Mark enjoyed riding his motorcycle, fishing, spending time outdoors and of course spending time with his daughters, Rafaela and Nikole.
Even though Mark has immense physical pain, he creates a “to-do” list every day to keep himself engaged and productive. Mark’s true spirit has not changed. If you spoke to him on the phone you would never know how dire his circumstances are.
My brother’s resolve inspires me to do something worthwhile and kind every day. His faith in God is truly remarkable and inspirational.
Thank you for taking the time to read Mark’s story. We are asking for your help.
We appreciate your prayers and would be very grateful for any help in offsetting the costs associated with this diagnosis. We are thankful for any and all of your support.
On behalf of Mark and our family, I thank you from my heart!Mark, Matthew and Vicki
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