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Tanner's Cancer Fight

$34,430 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 392 people in 7 months
Created July 6, 2017
This is Tanner. Tanner is our 30 year old son and the father of two young boys.  He was recently diagnosed with cancer. He writes his story below:

I'm Tanner Lee, and I have recently been diagnosed with mixed seminoma and non-seminoma testicular cancer. I had emergency surgery on June 21, 2017 to remove my left testicle. It had a 7 centimeter malignant tumor, which is larger than a lime. There is a strong possibility that the cancer has spread into my body as well. I have a golf ball sized lymph node cluster on my left collar bone and constant lower back pain. It's been nearly impossible to work through the pain lately.

Rachel, my partner, and mother of our two young boys, Henry and Van, has been my backbone these last couple months. Her support has meant everything. She has a small business, but her income, alone, cannot keep us afloat. I'm a server at Siena Tavern, a very popular restaurant in downtown Chicago. In my industry, there's no paid medical leave. So, being out of work is having a serious impact on my life right now. I went back to work just 8 days after surgery, but it's been extremely hard . I've had to call off a few times since returning . My family depends on me, hugely. With our car payment, mortgage and utilities beginning to fall behind, and our grocery money dwindling... It's scary right now.  


I also don't have health insurance. I have been uninsured for a while for a couple  reasons.  One, I live a super  healthy lifestyle, and two, I don't take prescription meds or anything, so I didn't have any regular medical costs to cover. Obviously I got a serious wake up call. My medical bills are already up to almost $20,000 and I've only begun my fight. I have another round of blood labs and six CT scans happening this week.

About 4  years ago, my whole family went vegan. With heart disease, cancer, and chronic illness happening to loved ones all around us, we decided to commit to a cleaner, healthier lifestyle that would help prevent many serious conditions. I have done hundreds of hours of research on ways to naturally optimize health and vitality. Unfortunately, testicular cancer is much less affected by diet than most other life threatening conditions.

I'm doing everything it takes to fight this and beat it completely. I need your help. My family is everything to me. Please help me take of myself so I can keep taking care of them. If you can't donate, I ask you to please at least share this on whatever social media you use. Every little bit helps me get through this and become a stronger and better man than ever before.

We would love any help you can give Tanner and his family during this difficult time, prayers included!

Much love and gratitude,

Lynn and Scott Lee

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Today is the end of 5 weeks, so far, in intensive care for Tanner. We can't begin to tell you how incredibly grateful we all are for your love and support through all of this. Tanner is an answer to prayer. He is heroic in his hard work to get better. Yesterday he went 6.5 hours off of the vent before fatigue set in and he asked to go back on so he could rest. He had both occupational and physical therapy, he writes all kinds of stuff down, and is really good at mouthing words. He even plays Angry Birds on a tablet. He will get a "talking valve" for his trach very soon. Here's a thing...two days ago, physical therapy STOOD HIM UP. ON HIS FEET. For real. Tanner was quick to say it was for 1 very assisted second and that it was super hard but he did it. They want to try again today.

He is really tired of the same view. He is really sad that his kids aren't allowed into the hospital because of this horrible flu season.

Medically, he is still not making platelets and loses red cells. He is still using blood products so please take time to donate blood if you can. We are waiting on some tests to come back to see what might be going on with his platelet production. He still has a little hole in his right lung so they cannot pull the last chest tube. That thing is uncomfortable to say the least. He still has months of rehabilitation after he is released from the ICU to next-step facilities but he is getting those next steps!

He is a Miracle Man. Prayers, love and a strong medical team have all worked together to bring him new life. Keep the prayers coming. We all need them, especially Tanner.
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Hi Friends and Family,

The journey continues. Tanner is continuing to heal and there is no doubt it is from your love and prayers. Folks who say thoughts and prayers are worthless just have no idea of what it is like to witness miracles and feel peace in storms.

Today he had a tracheostomy so that he can continue to get a little help breathing (really...just enough to keep him from getting overly fatigued) but doesn't have to have tubes down his throat. He is still pretty zonked from the surgery but looks so much more comfortable. It is nice to see his face again!

I can hardly believe that it has been FOUR WEEKS since he first fell so ill. It seems like both a lifetime and just seconds. So much has happened and so much still needs to happen for him to get to be home and cancer free. Please do not stop praying. We are all lifted up by you and everything that you have done for Tanner...for his family...for all of us.

Specific prayers...for platelets to start to regenerate, for his comfort and transition to the trach, for his "next steps", for peace in his own heart as he is well enough to know how far he still has to go, for his boys, Henry and Van who haven't seen their dad in a month.

We all love you so very much,

Scott, Lynn and all of Tanner's family
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All I can say is YOUR PRAYERS GOT US HERE!!! This is the best smile I have seen in 3 weeks. As of this morning, Tanner is off of the ventilator. He is as skinny as anyone I've ever seen, has lots of muscle strength to build up, but, loved ones, he has been brought out of the pit. It is a very good day.
Good morning!!
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It has been just over two weeks since Tanner was put on a ventilator for this absolutely terrible pneumonia he has. It seems like it has been so much longer as we have sat with him and cried over him and prayed over him and felt hope with every good turn and gut-clutching frustration when things don't go in a good direction. The nurses and doctors are fantastic at IU University Hospital and monitor his every moment with calm precision. They tell us his youth is on his side and that it is a marathon and not a sprint to getting out of this critical state he is in.
We know he has more on his side than youth. We know he has God and all of you. We know his heart for his boys. I read every single "reply" on Facebook and every note sent through Go Fund Me. I share your love with Tanner. I know he loves you back. We sure do.
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$34,430 of $100,000 goal

Raised by 392 people in 7 months
Created July 6, 2017
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