Ben was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, which is brain cancer.
It all happened so suddenly. They found out on Thursday December 4, 2014 and quickly had surgery to remove the tumor on Monday December 8, 2014.
Ben has a long road of recovery ahead of him. He will begin aggressive chemotherapy and radiation in two weeks. Right after Christmas.
We wanted to set this page up to help with costs associated with his treatment and the cost of traveling to and from UCSF.
The Roach family’s life has been turned upside down. This is supposed to be a joyous time of year filled with Christmas trees and candy canes. Instead it is filled with fear, shock, disbelief and a tremendous amount of emotional distress.
Lets do everything we can to help Ben and his family this holiday season and in the upcoming New Year. We want to have one less thing for them to worry about.
Well, not quite yet, but its definitely a turn in the long and twisty road that lies ahead of Ben, Max, Steph and Paul.
After a really nice break from mom and dad at Camp Okizu, a specially designed camp for children with cancer, Ben returned to UCSF for his 5th of the 6 regimen of chemo treatments. All has gone according to schedule, and his final round of chemo is scheduled to start the last week of August.
After that he will have a lumbar puncture and MRI tests again in September.
What lies ahead if those test results are clear? Ben will have MRI's, lumbar punctures, and blood work every 3 months for the next 5 years. But now the rehabilitation begins. They will be working with Ben on various things to help him recover from the damage done by this aggressive (yet necessary) treatment and hopefully by January he can return to school and the exciting world of finally having lockers and multiple classes and all the new things that being in junior high vs. elementary school await for him.
And is he "cancer free" if the tests come back clear?
Don't we all wish it was that simple... but no, not yet. He will be considered in remission, which is an amazing milestone for him to reach, but not near the end of the road yet.
What is "remission" then if its not cancer free?
Basically its a decrease in or disappearance of signs and symptoms of cancer. There are 2 kinds. In partial remission, some (but not all) signs and symptoms of cancer have disappeared. In complete remission, all signs and symptoms of cancer have disappeared, although cancer still may be in the body.
So we are hoping for complete remission with hope and prayers and all the most positive energy we can muster. Sometimes its very challenging and emotional to process that just because the chemo ends and a test is what we all hope it doesn't mean the battle is over - and this next 5 years of waiting and watching while rehabilitating will be one where the family needs more support than ever.
How can you help?
Please consider donating!
On top of meeting their yearly $12,500 deductible for the next 5 years, they will have many out of pocket expenses; therapies & medications that are not covered by insurance, gas, car wear and tear and other needs.
With peace, love, hope and belief that Ben is on the path that will lead him to be cancer free -thank you all for the support!!
Being honest, each round of chemotherapy is getting harder and harder on Ben, no matter how tough and brave he is, the fight is a hard one. Despite Ben's best efforts at drinking nutrition shakes & trying to eat what he can, he is malnourished, and so it was decided to put in a PICC line to deliver nutrition directly into his system.
The hospital stay was longer than planned, due to the PICC line and some challenges. His electrolytes were off and he needed to be closely monitored. Thankfully everything settled down and he was released and is home resting. He has also gained 4 pounds back, which is a huge accomplishment!
As the PICC line is a temporary solution, he will be having surgery to have a Gastric (G) Tube placed directly into his stomach on May 20th. As long as all goes as expected he will be in the hospital for 3 days. He then returns for his next "round" of chemotherapy on June 2nd.
In-between all these events he is at the hospital about 1 - 2 times a week for tests as well as platelet & blood transfusions.
The bravery & fight in this kid is hard to summarize in words, and the love and support and strength in his family is humbling. When you are with them, around them and hearing about them all you want to do is find ways to help.
So now is your chance - there are MANY ways you can help.
As medical cost are rising we need your help! Please share our page and donate if you can!
Join us for the Team Ben Fundraiser on May 30th from 12-5 at the District Theatre in downtown Gilroy.
You can help us spread the word by sharing the following pages:
Facebook Event page, or the event web page
Share Ben’s story with friends and family and encourage them to donate.
( http://cwob.org/ben/index.html http://www.gofundme.com/teamben
We need volunteers!
Please contact Christi via email at email@example.com for more info.
We want to thank you all for your continued support. We cannot express with words the gratitude from Steph, Ben, Paul & Max.
With love and hope -Team Ben
Ben finished the first 6 week series of treatments for his cancer. He is home now for 3 more weeks to rest and recuperate. He will be inpatient for the next much longer series (6 months) of chemotherapy.
We are all truly inspired and so proud of the bravery, strength and determination that Ben has in this fight. We are humbled by the generosity and support of the community around them and can't thank you all enough!
Unfortunately, they are having to fight with insurance constantly and pay out of pocket for a lot of Ben's medications.
So please donate if you can and continue to share this page as every dollar helps.
Thank you all again!!
We have met our first goal of $10,000.
You have no idea how helpful this has been as many of Ben's very costly medications are not being covered by insurance. These funds help offset the cost of his treatments and expenses.
We have a couple new things going on here at Team Ben...
The first is that we have an awesome t-shirt designed by Ben's cousin with his input of course ;-) Proceeds will go directly to Ben. Team Ben is a way to represent the community he has behind his fight. You can purchase a shirt, tank or sweatshirt here: http://teespring.com/teamben
Wanna take it one step further? Take creative pictures in the shirts and send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Buy a bunch for your office or sports team or family going on vacation or a concert (Ben loves rock and roll) and snap those pics! Send them in!! We will show him all the cool people and places and help him know about the Team Ben community and the support he has in his fight. Share the idea and the link. Please be part of the inspiration behind his fight.
The other is that we have raised our goal. Our new goal is $20,000. We never fathomed the idea that we would be able to raise $10,000. But with the support of all of you we have done exactly that. We know that we can raise even more funds for Team Ben!! This is going to be a long hard journey for the Roach family. Let's do all we can to show our support!!
Thank you all again! Your kind thought and generosity mean the world to us!!