He was my everything, my closest friend, my mentor and my inspiration. He was wise, kind, immeasurably patient and generous, free-spirited, artistic, and full of benevolent irreverance. He lived with a beautiful sense of joie de vivre -- the type of person that defies simple description. After he was diagnosed with advanced cancer, our experience was a living nightmare. Every day was a heartbreaking, confusing, frustrating, loving, desperate and eye-opening slog.
Though he was seen by one of the leading doctors in the world for Cholangiocarcinoma, the treatment options were limited due to the reality that there are only ~8,000 new cases of this cancer diagnosed in the US each year. Because cancers like Cholangiocarcinoma affect only a small portion of the population, they simply do not receive the same funding and research attention as more prevalent cancers. Unfortunately, my father wasn't one of the "lucky" patients with the genetic mutation that allows for alternative treatments, so we proceeded with the only available option: chemotherapy. The goal of this treatment was not remission, which was ruled out by the advanced state of the cancer, but to lengthen my father's life. The first chemortherapy did not work, and the second treatment was cut short as daily complications derailed the regimen and the cancer continued to spread throughout his body.
In my father's memory, I will to fight to raise money and awareness to fund research for ALL cancers to give everyone a fair chance at a longer life. I am profoundly grateful and fortunate to have had my father for as long as I did. Now, with the help of friends and family, I want to help give others a chance to expect miracles if they or a loved one is diagnosed with cancer. I appreciate any support you are able to give to Expect Miracles Foundation.