Kevins Heart Fund

$20,565 of $35,000 goal

Raised by 155 people in 5 months
Created February 24, 2019
Kevin was rushed to the Clinica de Merida with a heart attack. He needs triple bypass surgery right away. In Mexico, the hospital demands that all costs be paid upfront— there is no insurance or payment plans. Unless we can pay the surgeon, they will not operate and we fear Kevin will die.  The $35,000 is due when he leaves the Hospital.
Any amount will help, and if you can’t donate, please share this to all
Your friends.”
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A huge thank you to all of you wonderful people who have donated to Kevin's Heart Fund. We are over halfway now, and hope that the donations will continue to come in during this time that we are waiting for Kevin to have the bypass surgery that he so desperately needs. The surgery is set for March 28th or March 29 now. He is home, resting and waiting for the interim meds that he had to take dissolve out of his blood. I hope that you have had a chance to read the other updates, particularly the ones from Kevin. He, and his family, are so grateful for the response to the Fund. We realize that not everyone can afford to donate, so we ask you to share and keep sharing, keep prayers and positive thoughts for him, and know that you are deeply appreciated.
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Letter from Kevin
Kevin Nicholson is feeling grateful.
16 hrs
I am overwhelmed by everyone's generosity. I know many people do not know me, but yet I am receiving much needed assistance from you. So, please allow me to introduce myself...

An Update: Who is this guy, Kevin?

My past, and what has made me what I am today:

I am a Maker.

I've sold suits to the rich, kept babies clean and safe, created life saving machines, and helped make machines that will scare that life right back out of you. I've made products that were cheap and useless, products that were everlasting and priceless, products that can heal a brain or heart and, unfortunately a few products that have been used to kill in the name of senseless causes.

I've fried tacos and sold olives. I've made and still make excellent beer...excellent, world class beer.

I'm an entrepreneur, a wanna-be musician, a mechanic, a carpenter, an electrician, a painter. I am a restorer, and re-finisher; “quality” should not be discarded but restored to the incredible, original vision of the inventors.

I am a lover of machines that exude the thought that was put into them.
I am a lover of architectural marvels that were not created to impress, but were to serve a purpose in a most beautiful way.
I am in awe that airplanes can fly, animals migrate and the world has a harmonic vibration.

I still have hope for humanity.

I respect everyone and everything in the world until they give me cause not to. {People typically do not like that side of me.}
I am the nicest guy I know and I strive to be my best everyday. {I've found people see that as a personality flaw and a weakness.}
I would do anything for anyone without hesitating, although I do get taken advantage of quite often.
I love logic; logic in thought, logic in design, logic in space, logic in nature.

But then I found art, here in Mérida.

Art is the anti-engineering, cross your t's, check the torque numbers, “what if” , opposite of everything I knew. I can create anything and not worry what the death toll would be if a failure occurred. I don't have a budget that is closely watched and in need of approval (yet). And, I don't have to follow specifications, just my heart and imagination.

I make “things” in 3D. I know, not too many people know what that means so let me rephrase that...
I am a sculptor. My medium is polygons that are placed in a virtual 3D space and are positioned by altering the direction of the polygons vertices and vectors within that 3D space. I take a "lump" of polygons and, with my digital tools, sculpt the polygons to a desired form. I also add a virtual armature (a.k.a. bones) that makes the sculpture move and I animate every nuance of that movement. I also paint the sculpture with colors, textures, and an infinite imagination. I can literally create anything with this art form and use it to entertain, teach, amuse, stupefy, build and manufacture.

Concepts to products, dreams to reality.

I found my passion for this 3D art when I one day stumbled upon the art work of Viviana Hinojosa in Galería La Eskalera here in Mérida. The paintings were so illogical, childlike, amusing, inviting and surreal. I wanted to be transported into those paintings. I am now working on doing just that.

Other “stuff” about me:

I am honest to a fault. If you ask for my opinion I will first ask you if you really want to know my answer.
If I promise you something (and I don't do that often) I will deliver on my promise.
If I tell you that I have your back (and I don't do that often) I will do anything for you.
I was raised Catholic until they educated me enough to use my newly developed, aforementioned love of logic.
I have manners and even know the proper utensil placement for a formal dinner.
I look good in a suit but feel more comfortable in “should be washed” jeans.
I do not believe chivalry is dead.
I respect my elders.
I listen. I read. I follow the instructions.
I have an unhealthy love for old Vespa scooters.
I always want to know more; about that thing, about that function, about that person, about you.
My first language is the dying art of Sarcasm (fluent), followed by English (usable and understandable) then Spanish (embarrassingly laughable).

I will love my wife forever.

In earlier times I would have been that crazy inventor guy living above some garage and occasionally blowing things up (accidentally, of course) trying to perfect an idea that is stuck in his head and keeps working on that idea 24/7 until it becomes a reality.

For the most part, that's who I am.

Thank you for reading this and thank you so much for your help. I hope to personally thank each and everyone of you someday, somehow. But I need to get through this situation first.
I hope you understand.
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Front page of Yucatan Ex-Pat paper on the 5th of March
Friends and family rally for heart attack victim facing huge hospital bills
GoFundMe gets him halfway there; artists donate work for fundraiser to raise even more money

By Lee Steele - March 5, 2019

Kevin Nicholson’s friends and family are raising funds to pay for heart surgery. Photo: GoFundMe
In eight days, friends and family raised over $17,000 to help a 57-year-old American who is living in Merida and struggling for his life.

That’s not quite halfway to the goal, however. So Kevin Nicholson’s friends are holding a fundraiser (more details here) on Thursday at Galeria La Eskalera. Several local, noted artists have donated works for sale to raise additional funds. Two of them, Viviana Hinojosa and Manolo Taure, are hosting the event, where 100 percent of the proceeds will go toward urgent heart surgery.

The effort began more than a week ago with a simple plea online.


“Kevin was rushed to the Clinica de Merida with a heart attack,” reads his GoFundMe page. “He needs triple bypass surgery right away. In Mexico, the hospital demands that all costs be paid upfront — there is no insurance or payment plan. Unless we can pay the surgeon, they will not operate and we fear Kevin will die. The $35,000 is due when he leaves the hospital.
Any amount will help, and if you can’t donate, please share this to all
your friends.”

Kevin’s wife, Cynthia, expressed her gratitude on the fundraising page.

“Words cannot express how grateful Kevin and I are for all of your contributions. We are truly overwhelmed by everyone’s generosity and so very thankful that there are so many amazing, beautiful people that are helping us in our time of need,” she said. “We will be thanking everyone individually as soon as we can. It may take a month or more, but please know you will all be in our thoughts through this rollercoaster ride and cannot wait until it is behind us and Kevin is healthy again.”

Kevin’s Heart Fund Raising Art Sale starts 7 p.m. Thursday at La Eskalera, Calle 70 474B, near Calle 57. All proceeds from the wine reception and art sale go toward Nicholson’s surgery.
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From Kevin to all of us
Kevin Nicholson is feeling rough.
March 4 at 11:23 PM ·

My day: (an update)
Hello and thank you all for your outpouring of greetings, love, hugs, help, food, art, donations, information, rides and restoring my general belief that there are still really good people in the world that are willing to do anything for friends, or even strangers, in need.
My day started badly, very badly. I needed to visit the man that I was going to trust with my life, my future heart surgeon. I was scared, emotional and had quickly spiraled into a very dark place in the last few days that I couldn't seem to pull myself out of. Cindi (my wife), the eternal optimist, was prepared with a million and one questions. I only had one; I wanted to know how much time I had left with my wife.
Cindi diligently asked each question and kept asking until a satisfactory answer was established. I was a million miles away, vaguely hearing words such as "odds", "complications", "infections" and "mortality rates".
The Doctor had answers and he sounded like he knew his subject, a true professional. A person, that without hesitation, could give clear concise answers. I started to listen, I joined the conversation, I was in the room again. The answers weren't just stated to appease an obviously nervous patient, they were answers formed from years of experience and thousands of situations like mine, or much worse.

"Much worse" I thought. As I started to focus I knew things could have been much worse. I was extremely lucky my friends Raul was available and rushed me to the emergency room; he saved my life. I was lucky I had the privilege to be able to go to an emergency room and it was not my final journey. I was lucky my wife was able to return to see me so quickly; I was lucky I could see her again. Things could have been "much worse".
(Dammit, I'm crying again! )

My heart is in bad shape. Mechanically my engine is running at full speed but my oil pump gear is slipping, reducing the lubrication need to keep everything moving. Medically, the right side of my heart is in poor condition and the left side is trying to make up for the reduced performance overworking the heart as a whole. So nothing changed with the diagnostic, I still need a triple bypass; open heart surgery. They also need to strip approximately 45cm of "vascular material" from my leg to use as spare parts for my heart. Once the surgery takes place I will be admitted to ICU for 2-3 days, admitted to a recovery room after that for another 3-5 days and then they say I will be able to walk home (although they did not recommend that in any way). Then rehab, and a good conversation with myself as to how I got here and where I am going to go in life.

We still have more papers to file and more tests to be run (more, more, more) prior to surgery. We found a way to transfer the life saving donations you have been collecting for me from the USA. I also know I am not going to suddenly die waiting for papers to be transferred and checks to be cashed (well, they are giving me less than a 35% chance of sudden death, if I take it easy. I will take it easy).

If you have questions, want to say "hi", throw me a virtual hug, or engage in any other 2019 form of communication, I will be here, in bed, beating those 35% odds. Surgery day is still "to be determined" depending on the availability of blood and the results of my other tests. I will keep everyone up to date.

~To my friends: I've made myself too busy trying to open a business and I miss you. I neglected you. I need to rethink what is really important in my life and how I can include you in it. I failed you as a friend and you are now helping save my life, regardless of my failure.
~To my new found friends, I can not express my appreciation enough in words and will meet with you soon to tell you how much your involvement changed, and saved, my life.
~To the people I've never met, may never meet and the anonymous donors to my cause, I love you. ❤️ Your selfless act toward a total stranger is what the world could and should be. You gave me hope, you gave me strength, you gave me life and I will be forever thankful.
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$20,565 of $35,000 goal

Raised by 155 people in 5 months
Created February 24, 2019
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