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April  2003


   March      Don Ι Monica         May

Don's Story


as told by his wife, Carol


With sadness we must report that Don passed away in the early morning hours of June 10th - deepest sympathy to his wife Carol & his family.


Don has been undergoing a series of surgeries to bypass blocked arteries throughout his body. After the last surgery, he began to have a lot of trouble breathing and keeping his oxygen saturation up. He has also had a problem with keeping his blood pressure from falling too low. He never recovered after that surgery and the swelling in his neck never went down. They did a cat scan to see what was happening and found lung cancer. When they intubated him, the primary tumor collapsed leaving an air pocket in the lung. He has been diagnosed as stage 4 small cell carcinoma. His prognosis without treatment is a week, two at the very most. He has chosen to try radiation and chemotherapy which will begin today, March 19th. If the chemo is more than he wants to handle, he will call it off. The tumors are butted up against the aorta and esophagus so he is unable to eat solid foods unless extremely soft. It started compressing his airway yesterday and he could feel his throat closing up. They took him to surgery and put in a porta-cath to use for chemo and blood draws because his veins are bad. After surgery, the throat swelling went away so they think the fluid in the lymph nodes shifted. They couldn't really explain it but thank God it turned around. We were afraid he wouldn't make it to chemo and radiation. We are praying that the radiation will shrink the tumors and relieve the pressure on his aorta and esophagus. He came home from the hospital around 9pm last night and hopes he does not have to return. Now we wait. He has been very adamant that he get to see his newborn grandbabies before he dies. They are traveling from N.C. tomorrow to spend a week with us so he has relaxed a little.











April 2003 Feature


(Don trying to snatch a bite of his grandson's first candy bar!)


Name: Don

Birthday: February 14

Diagnosis: Terminal lung cancer and severe peripheral vascular disease



Mailing Address:


Thank you for all the cards mailed to Don.




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