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Pilot ending Career A.L.S.

$74,601 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 721 people in 14 months
Created June 17, 2018
Rod Willroth
on behalf of Rhonda Bellm
My name is Rod Willroth, I have been with Continental/United Airlines 29 years.About 7 years ago Tom Bellm and I had an Engine failure. Toms performance was exemplary! Tom has a new emergency, he has been Diagnosed with career ending A.L.S. Tom started with Continental now United 18 years ago. He has been married to his wife Rhonda since 2005 and they have twin 10 year olds.Tom and his family are facing giant bills to deal with his new reality. Adaptive vehicles, wheel chairs, adapting their home. Tom of course will be on long term disability but this will in no way cover the expenses associated with the devastating disease. Please take time to say a prayer and search your heart to see if you can assist Tom and his family with a donation. Tom is a proud man and I had to push him hard to allow this page to happen. Please help me show the Bellm’s that people care about them and their suffering.
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Hi all,
Sorry I've been a little behind on updates with tom. The bad news first.. he is getting a feeding tube on wed of this week. Hes been choking so much on foods and liquids that the doctors fear he may aspirate, which leads to pneumonia, which is the main cause of death for people with ALS. So if he minimizes what goes thru his mouth we are hoping that will help. Hes also lost about 25 pds so that will help get some weight back on and increase his energy. We arent looking forward to it but like everything else we just do it and adjust.
He can only take a few steps with assistance now so he got his big power wheel chair. He isn't able to talk anymore legible so he has his tablet with eye gaze that allows him to type with his eyes to speak for him.
On the positive, we are taking a bucket list trip to alaska in a few weeks with Tom's brother and family. We are so excited to get our minds off ALS and see God's beauty. We also got a pug puppy, Lola. She is wearing me out and destroying the house but she sits with tom for hours during the day. I got her hoping she would bring him joy and she's taking her job seriously.
Life is hard, I'm not going to lie. We aren't perfect, we still fight, tom is still depressed about the life he could have had, my nerves are shot, the kids probably think I'm crazy. But we also have funny moments too. When something's super sad we make a joke about it. We joke it's like charades trying to understand what daddy's saying. We are still doing the best we can to be happy as a family. That's all for now. Please continue to pray for us. Thank you to everyone for the outpouring of love, support and help we've been given. It's been amazing. I couldn't do it without you all.
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We met with a pulmonologist today and they said Tom's breathing function is now at 50% where it was at 100% 1 year ago. He will be fitted for a bi pap/trilogy machine for nighttime, in the next few weeks to hopefully give his diaphragm some help and slow down his decline. Please pray for us. Every time we see a dr it seems worse and I dont know how to handle it and try to be positive for Tom when nothing seems to be going our way. Hes feeling awfully down and I dont blame him. I can't even explain how hard it is to listen to drs talk about feeding tubes/trachs/palliative care (hospice for down the road), doing bucket list stuff..Its all just too much...
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Not sure if this is too blunt but it is what it is.
Hi all, just wanted to give an update on Tom. Things are not going well. His speech has severely slowed, his left leg has gotten weak to the point that he is extremely slow walking and has a limp. His left hand is unusable and his right hand has severely atrophied and is hardly usable. The dr doesnt want him to drive anymore so I now have to figure out how to be at 2 sports at once across the metroplex to keep my kids lives as normal as possible so they dont suffer any more than they are. He is choking alot on foods and liquids so we are going to have to alter his diet. The choking is very scary for the family to watch because we never know if its serious or not. He is being fitted for a tablet that will talk for him and at some point he will use his eye movements to make words when his hands no longer work. They have requested a scooter for him on loan and want to talk in 3 mths
about a heavy duty power chair. Of all the things going downhill his breathing was going well. We met with the dr Thursday and now his diaphragm is weakening. It has weakened to the point where he is no longer a candidate for a trial we were desperately trying to get in. I'm honestly in a very low place right now. I've been praying for so long for a miracle, for it to slow down, to just stop...its only done the opposite. Tom and I are both emotionally and spiritually exhausted. I need you all to stand in the gap and pray for us when our faith feels thin. Thank you so much for all the prayers and thoughts. This disease is a monster and I hate it.
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$74,601 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 721 people in 14 months
Created June 17, 2018
Rod Willroth
on behalf of Rhonda Bellm
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RH
$100
Rich and Heather Howard
3 days ago
$30
Anonymous
9 days ago
$100
David Whitson
18 days ago
DH
$250
Dan Hassenger
1 month ago
JD
$50
James Dunbar
1 month ago
WV
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William Vargas
1 month ago
AS
$250
Alexi Stavropoulos
1 month ago
TO
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