Happy New Year Everyone!
Dear Family, Friends, and Colleagues,
Sorry everyone for being so quiet the past few weeks. It has been a very difficult and tiring period of medical testing, travel, and obvious disappointment about not meeting the health requirements for the stem cell transplant procedure in Chicago. We have had an emotional roller coaster ride this past 18 months with the birth of our son Troy, the news of Mike’s diagnosis and rapidly deteriorating health, the hope and inspiration from our very successful fundraising program, and finally this most recent news that there are issues with Mike’s heart that dramatically increase his risk of not surviving the stem cell transplant. We are obviously very disappointed but at the same time we are blessed to have so many caring and loving supporters around us who have generously donated time, money, and emotional support in an effort to help us.
We have accepted this unfortunate reality now and have already begun pursuing the lung transplant option for which Mike just recently underwent the assessment to determine his eligibility. We should know in the next month or so if Mike will be a candidate, and in the interim, will be researching diligently to estimate the out of pocket costs for pre and post lung transplant surgery. The surgery itself will be covered by OHIP, however, there will be significant out of pocket expenses as well: Travel and relocation prior to and after surgery for Mike to live several months to prepare and recover from surgery while in an immune suppressed state, a lifetime of immunosuppressant and anti-rejection drugs not covered by OHIP, medical devices and other aides to help Mike following surgery. It is also expected that Mike will go on long-term disability for a substantial, unknown period of time with limited physical ability.
This has left us in a unique position regarding the funds raised for the Help Save Mike campaign as he is no longer candidate for a stem cell transplant. Mike now must pursue a double lung transplant which also entails significant costs. We have received feedback from many of our generous supporters to use the money raised to date towards our upcoming lung transplant expenses which we now intend to do. Once we have received confirmation of Mike’s lung transplant eligibility and have determined all of the costs involved we may be in the position to return some portion of the donations raised to date. As such, we are asking you to let us know if you wish to have your pro rata portion of any excess funds returned in the coming months when we know what is left over. If so, please reply to our website www.helpsavemike.ca using the Contact page with the amount of your donation, name and address, and who the cheque should be made payable to. We will contact you in due course with more details.
To those of you who have already told us that you would like us to keep your donation we are very touched and grateful. The family intends to place any excess funds not reimbursed into a trust fund for our son Troy.
Mike, Christine, and Troy
We can’t thank everyone enough for their extraordinary support. It really has made a difference in our lives. We have received word from Chicago, unfortunately I’ve been turned down for the therapy due to pulmonary hypertension in the right side of heart. this is common in patients with lung disease. The organ transplant team in Toronto is used to seeing this issue and it does not preclude me for lung transplant. Once we complete the assessment in Toronto next week, we will be researching the costs involved for lung transplant and will be using some of the fundraising money as needed. we will be reimbursing some of our larger supporters accordingly.
Thank you so much, we will keep you updated, Always strong
Mike, Christine and Troy
Hi everyone, wanted to let you know we received a call a from Chicago and were asked to be there next week!!Very exciting news although we have been scrambling a bit to get organized we are leaving Monday morning November 17th. Stay tuned for an update from Chicago.
Love Mike, Christine and Troy
We are pleased to share some more great news. After announcing the Larry Gibson Estate Fund matching donations we have recieved
$11, 000. in donations and are only $9, 000. away from our goal.
We can’t thank you enough Kingston.