Romm Family Cancer Recovery Fund

$9,407 of $50k goal

Raised by 46 people in 20 months
We are the Romm family of Sedona, AZ.  Ken, Robyn (our daughter) and Laurel (my wife).

Twenty years ago Laurel and I left our engineering jobs in the Southern California aerospace industry and moved to Sedona, AZ to start a better life. It was a hard adjustment but well worth it. We love living here and raising our daughter in this beautiful part of the country.

Over the last two years we have been hit hard by cancer. Early last year Laurel suffered a recurrance of Melanoma (skin cancer) which required major surgery and an extended stay off work with associated costs of rehab and recovery. She is doing well and is currently in remission.  Several months after her recovery, I was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma (a bone marrow cancer) and have been undergoing chemotherapy in preparation for a bone marrow transplant. My insurance is covering a large part of the treatment, but I will have to stay at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix for 3 months while I recuperate and the insurance doesn't cover the 30 days of 24/7 care, lodging outside the hospital and the transportation I will need to complete my treatment.  Having just gotten through my wife's recovery and maxed out my credit cards to pay for her non-covered expenses, I don't have many options left to pay for my non-covered costs. 

Laurel is a high school science teacher, and in Arizona teacher salaries are among the lowest in the country, but she loves what she does, and the kids love her, so she will continue to do this until she retires.

I work for a medical device manufacturing company, love what I do, and get paid a decent salary but not enough to keep up with the non-covered medical costs of my disease.

Robyn is a college student working toward a degree in Biology. She eventually wants to work in the area of medical research involving the practical applications of naturally occuring venoms!

Until we were hit with our cancer costs, we had managed to pay off most of our houshold debt and were planning toward eventual retirement in our futures.

We have always been responsible community members, and supported many charities in the past. I never imagined I would have to ask for charity for myself but here I am.

With your help I hope we can get our medical debt under control so we can continue to enjoy the things that brought us to this part of the country.

My pledge to you is this: We will use every dollar raised to pay for the costs of my and my wife's treatment, and any money left over will be donated to the Mayo Clinic Foundation to help pay for the next person who needs care.
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 36 total shares
Update 10
Posted by Kenneth Romm
12 months ago
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As I said in my last update, fatigue and nausea are still with me . To that end I forgot the most important and best news to share... When I went back down to the Mayo Clinic, just before Christmas, to see my transplant doctor, I was told that my bone marrow and blood tests showed no signs of Multiple Myeloma / Amyloidosis . In other words, I am in remission. This is a good thing and can last for years or decades.

Ken
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Update 9
Posted by Kenneth Romm
12 months ago
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Well, it is time for another update. Since I got out of the hospital some months back I have been on the slow road to recovery. I am back home in Sedona, and back at work at W.L. Gore & Associates. I am still doing dialysis 3 days a week although the tests on my kidneys are showing small improvements at each test. Unfortunately the rate of improvement is so slow that it may take years for them to recover enough to get off dialysis. Physically, my strength is slowly getting better and right now I would say I have 75-80% of my old strength back.

The worst part of this whole process is the fatigue and nausea that still plagues me from day to day. Some days are better then others and some days are worse. The doctors recommend I compare things on a week by week basis. When I do that I can definitely see the improvement. Thank you to all our friends and visitors that have donated. It really helps! I still have some hefty copays and drug costs to deal with as I move on down the road.

Please share my and my family's story with your Facebook friends. Best wishes for a healthier 2016.
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Update 8
Posted by Kenneth Romm
17 months ago
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Hi all!

Ken had his stem cell transplant last month. He's still feeling pretty crummy, but the doctors say the transplant took well, and his blood numbers are where they should be at this point. Unfortunately, he has had to go on dialysis, which apparently is a fairly common side effect of the large dose of chemo he had immediately prior to the transplant. No idea yet when he'll be able to come off dialysis.

He was discharged from the hospital 10 days ago, and is now staying in the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge, which is on the Mayo Hospital campus. He'll be there for the next 2 weeks or so.

Thanks to everyone for their help, good wishes, and prayers. We really appreciate everything you've done and continue to do!

Laurel
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Update 7
Posted by Kenneth Romm
18 months ago
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Well, This last week I had my stem cells collected. If all goes as planned, the transplant will occur next Friday.
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$9,407 of $50k goal

Raised by 46 people in 20 months
Created June 20, 2015
Ken Romm  
RB
$25
Rick Burd
12 months ago

Our God Reigns

SC
$187
Sedona Red Rock High Thespian Club
12 months ago (Offline Donation)
$100
Anonymous
12 months ago
$50
Anonymous
16 months ago
SS
$100
Susan Stater
16 months ago

Merry Minnies are sisters forever!

JM
$100
Jan McCorkle
17 months ago
$100
Anonymous
17 months ago
KC
$25
Kathy Candela
17 months ago

Best Wishes from a sister Merry Minnie!

DB
$100
Deborah Brackney
17 months ago

Wishing you the best

NM
$100
Nancy Maxwell
17 months ago

God bless, Laurel! GEC Minnies rock!

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