Help Derek Fight

$22,751 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 323 people in 4 months
Help Derek, a 10 year old who is in 5th grade and just diagnosed with a brain tumor on November 6th and his family by donating what you can. 

Donations will help defray medical costs, travel costs to Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota, Hotel Costs as they await acceptance into the Ronald McDonald House, lost wages (his mother has only been paid 2 days since diagnosis) and household bills and more. 

Derek loves Dell Rapids and is a friend to everyone he meets. He loves his family, baseball, comics, and his dog Jeter. He hopes to be a teacher when he grows up, he just needs the chance.

Derek underwent surgery to remove a tumor from the base of his skull Wednesday Nov. 7th. The tumor was malignant. Derek has been diagnosed with Medulloblastoma. He will start 6 weeks of proton radiation therapy at Mayo Clinic of Rochester, Minnesota (4 hours from home) December 3rd.  Derek is looking at a minimum of a year of chemotherapy treatment to battle his cancer.  Any help you can give is appreciated. 

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Derek is currently at the Castle with Donelle. He is probably getting ready to be sedated. He has 3 hour spine and brain MRI today to make sure there isn't any regrowth of tumor. I am awaiting text updates from Donelle.
Tonight we begin our 8 days of hotel living. Due to pending snowpocolypse, we are staying Friday, Saturday and Sunday night in hotels in Sioux Falls. We want to make sure that nothing stands in the way of getting on our flight at 6:00AM Monday morning for Florida for Derek's amazing Make-A-Wish South Dakota trip. KSFY News will be at the airport at 4:15AM Monday to report on Derek's adventure.
We are so looking forward to this trip and experiencing this all through Derek's eyes. New York Yankees, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Star Wars Hollywood Studios, and LEGOLAND Florida are on the agenda. Any one of those would bring a lifetime of memories. That Derek gets to experience all of them is simply a miracle.
A bit sad that we will be missing the 13th Annual Sioux Falls St. Baldrick's event next Thursday night. Please consider supporting Dustin, Matt, Brian, Pat, Mike and Randy as they shave their heads in support of Derek. You can donate the cause here: https://www.stbaldricks.org/teams/mypage/122513/2019
Thank you to Tom Hebert for watching over the house while we are gone, Tara 'Sanger' Baker and family for taking care of the dog, and Patrick Fritz for making sure the show is removed.
We are all so thankful to everyone who has contributed to making this trip possible. Thank you to Mary Pasch for getting the ball rolling with Make A Wish, to the Loiseau family and team at Loiseau Construction, Inc for sponsoring Derek's wish and each of you that have given to ease Derek's burden.
Watch my page and Donelle's page for updates from the trip.
We promise not to rub in the 80 degree weather...

Thank you all for your continued support.

Shane, Donelle and Derek
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What an amazing morning. The Community Waffle Feed and Silent Auction was a huge hit. Thank you to Pastor Jeff Sorenson and everyone at Lutheran Church of Dell Rapids for the effort. Thank you to everyone that donated items for the silent auction. The love that we felt today has filled our heart.
So happy that Derek felt well enough to sit at the benefit and see his friends. It was great to watch Derek and Talen visit and laugh and for Derek to see Parker, Luke and all his other classmates. He misses all of them.
The highlight was when Make-A-Wish South Dakota came in to reveal Derek's wish to him. We will be headed to Florida on the 11th of this month.
We will be seeing the New York Yankees play the Philadelphia Phillies on the 12th. We get special passes, Derek gets to go on the field for batting practice and to meet the players, we get to eat in the Dugout Club and get great seats for the game.
The next day we go to Universal Orlando Resort to Harry Potter World.
The next day we go to Walt Disney World for the Star Wars adventure.
Our last day we go to LEGOLAND Florida.
Joe and the entire team at Make A wish worked hard to make this special trip happen for Derek and they were able to check every box on his Florida Vacation wish list.
Donelle, Derek and I are so grateful to Louiseau construction co., Jennifer, Mary Dell, Jim, Shaw and the entire crew for graciously sponsoring Derek's wish.
Thank you isn't enough. But sincerely thank you all and God bless.
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Update on Derek 2/26/18
Derek responded well to his first round of Vincristine Chemotherapy. This is the same Chemo Drug he was on at Mayo Clinic. We have the same side effects as we had at Mayo with this particular drug so we are prepared for it. He is ravishingly hungry following the chemo, then we struggle with appetite the next few days and he runs a low grade fever. So we are back to taking an appetite stimulant and we are taking temperature more often.
He is going to school the next three days to work with his teacher from 10:30 to noon to continue to stay caught up with his classmates. Brady Lesnar, Kelley Gruneich and Natalie Eggers have been so amazing and helpful with Derek's educational needs.
At home we are working on his first communion paperwork as well so he can stay on pace with his peers there as well.
Marsha and Tara continue to help with care taking and we are so thankful for their efforts and love.
This weekend we have the Community Waffle Feed and Silent Auction at Lutheran Church of Dell Rapids. Make-A-Wish South Dakota will be there about 10 to reveal Derek's wish (shhhh secret). We are very excited about that.
There is an amazing team of men that are raising money to shave in solidarity with Derek at the 13th Annual Sioux Falls St. Baldrick's. We are so honored to have friends like Pat, Brian, Matt, Randy, Dustin and Mike who are willing to step forward and make this "sacrifice". You can donate to the cause here: https://www.stbaldricks.org/teams/mypage/122513/2019
This weekend we are interviewing people for summer caretaker for Derek. He is pretty self-sufficient and too smart for his own good, but he is a kid with stage 4 cancer that needs care (whether he admits it or not). We feel like we have a solid group that we will be interviewing.
You can still get wrist bands at Rivercity Tool & Pawn, Bar X Bar Flandreau and Bread & Circus Sandwich Kitchen.
You can get window decals at Vishnu Bunny Tattoo and you can get t-shirts at T-Shirts Too.
We appreciate all the goodwill, donations, thoughts, prayers and acts of kindness. No deed goes unnoticed or appreciated.
Blessings to you all.
Shane, Donelle and Derek.
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Life with Derek 2/16/19

We checked in to the Sanford Children's Hospital Sioux Falls yesterday at 9:30AM and got home to Dell Rapids today at 9:00PM. It's been a long 36 hours.
Derek responded to his first round of chemotherapy very well. We had no problems with his port access. He had to get liquids and nausea medication before starting his first bag of chemo. He is used to the vincristine as that is the chemo drug that he was on in conjunction with his radiation at Mayo Clinic. That one takes about 5 minutes. The second was the new very powerful chemo drug that we have not had. He was on the Cisplatin drop for 6 hours. This is the drug that will cause some level of hearing loss in him. They ran liquids, big bags of liquids the entire time that he was there to help flush the chemo drugs through his system.
Last night he had his chemo pill. He had nausea medication run every 12 hours. He only had one little spell of nausea the entire time there. A little bit of benedryl followed by a nap and that was solved. He had a booster shot to help bring his blood levels back up quicker right before we left tonight. We came home with anti-nausea medication that we will administer for the next 48 hours. We'll watch him close and push liquids; but this kid...
...Derek truly is a fighter. Very few reactions to the chemo and radiation and so far in round one of heavy chemo no side effects at all. He processes everything so well mentally and seems to be handling everything physically very well too. Donelle and I are so proud of how well he is handling all of this. Probably better than me and her. Well all sleep well in our beds tonight and look forward to when his dog comes home.
Glad that Donelle and I both have Monday off so we can be home with him.
We are back the next two weeks for outpatient vincristine and chemo pill. Between now and then we'll do all as normal as possible.
Call before stopping by and if you are sick at all please avoid us as Derek is very susceptible now to grems post chemo.

How can you continue to help?

* Keep doing the little things we are too tired or proud to ask for. Shoveling, dog walking, care taking, etc etc

*Attend the Community Waffle Feed and Silent Auction at Lutheran Church of Dell Rapids on March 3rd from 8:30 to 1:30.

*Buy a #fightDerekfight from T-Shirts Too in Flandreau. Contact TshirtsTooPersonalization@gmail.com and Deb Feske will set you up.

*Stop at Vishnu Bunny Tattoo and grab a #fightDerekfight window decal for $5.00 or free will donation.

*Stop at Rivercity Tool & Pawn in Yankton, Pizza Ranch (Dell Rapids, SD), Bar X Bar Flandreau or Bread & Circus Sandwich Kitchen Sioux Falls for your #FightDerekFight wristband.

*You can donate at any Wells Fargo Bank and make a direct donation to the Derek Gerlach Charity Fund.

* Attend 13th Annual Sioux Falls St. Baldrick's on March 14th at Pizza Ranch (Fun Zone – Sioux Falls W 41st)

*Support Derek's Defenders, Dustin, Pat, Brian, Mike, Matt and I, for Sioux Falls St. Baldrick's and help us meet our $1000.00 goal. Go to the link and click on the "Donate" box.

*Give to Derek's St. Baldrick's Honored Kids & Families fund at www.stbaldricks.org/kids/fightDerekfight

*Donate to the Go Fund Me Account linked below.

*Prayers, Love and positive thoughts are always appreciated.

Derek, Donelle, and Shane
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Raised by 323 people in 4 months
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