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Pancreas Cancer Web


OUR DEAR FRIEND CHARLIE


Our dear friend Charles was informed that he had pancreatic cancer five days before his 60th Birthday. What an amazing man, a pillar of strength and health. This all happened in May of 2001 -- what a month. He had just helped us get our first major planting done for the spring season. My father had suffered a heart attack, and had to have a six-way bypass. Charles had come to the rescue again. Such a strong, self sufficient, eager to lend a hand man. If it weren’t for him, we would never have been able to open up that spring. Charles had started to have lower back pains, but associated this with his heavy lifting. He marked it off as another day of overdoing it, but then his skin had taken on a new look. Yellowish cast, and he was having a lot of gastrointestinal difficulties. Hiccups were happening and he was suffering with a lot of acid reflux. He went to the doctor, and tests were ordered. Surgery was scheduled, and then the news was given of not being able to remove the growth that was described to him as being cement-like. It had his entire major nerve ending and encompassed most of his pancreas. He started on the chemo. He was taking the Gemzar, but his doctor never gave him any hope at all. Charles basically gave up, and his conditioned deteriorated. After chemo was discontinued, hospice was called in to help. They made him as comfortable as possible. His cognitive skills had become impaired, and he could no longer hold his head up off of his chest. He could not sleep, and felt it necessary to keep moving at all times. He was afraid to die, and would not allow himself an opportunity to rest for fear he would at any time. My husband and I helped out as much as we could. His wife was unable to go back to work, and caring for him became 24/7. He had to be hand fed when he ate anything at all, and he had incredible pain. I have never witnessed a cancer that was as ugly as this one. It took a strong, able-bodied man down to almost nothing at all. I could physically lift him and move him without any assistance. A hospital bed had to be moved in to their living room, because it was getting more difficult for Charles to get out of bed. He fought diligently up until the very end, but finally succumbed to this terrible disease eighteen months after his initial diagnosis. I miss him very much. He shared the same birthday as our daughter, and we never celebrated the one without recognizing the other. We miss Charles terribly, and a huge hole had developed, and emptiness has formed. I'm hoping that this terrible disease will find some miracle cure fast. Two years have passed, and not a day goes by without someone mentioning or something happing that reminds us of our dear friend. I wish for any and all of you that may be battling this disease the strength and perseverance needed to kick it. Our friend was an incredible person, and he is sadly missed. It has been almost two years, and it still feels like yesterday. May God Bless all of you and give you the strength you need to face this fight.


Posted 04/10/2003 12:06 am by KimS
E-mail Address: shuwee@crosslink.net

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