Posts Tagged ‘cancer’

Help Wanted

I’m asking for some help, Ladies and Gents, but not for myself. Let me introduce you to my friend Janesta and her family:

Janesta Violette is a dear friend, a devoted wife and mother, and was pursuing a college degree in game design and software development until she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Stage IV oral cancer late last year.

At the time of diagnosis her cancer was deemed inoperable because the surgeon would need to remove her entire tongue as well as a number of the lymph nodes in her neck. Given the aggressive nature of the cancer, other alternatives were considered. Radiation and chemotherapy commenced. All seemed to be going well, and the tumors shrank. Hurray!

Unfortunately, after Janesta’s treatments ended, the tumors began to grow again. Her body can’t take any more radiation or chemo at this point, so surgery is the only answer and it must be as soon as possible. The tumors must be removed before they can spread further. Unfortunately this still means the loss of her tongue.

Right now, Janesta’s husband is stationed at Fort Bliss in El Paso, TX. The nearest oncology ward with a surgeon capable of helping her is at the San Antonio Military Medical center. That’s roughly a ten to twelve hour drive. It also means that the family member accompanying Janesta needs a place to stay while she’s in the hospital.

So here’s the deal: Normally their insurance can reimburse travel costs related to medical procedures, or even advance them the estimated cost to make that trip across the state for surgery and treatment possible. Due to the recent government shutdown, the Violette family has been informed that there are no funds available, and that it’s unclear whether that funding will become available again in the future.

Let me make that clear: Due to the Congressional showdown over affordable healthcare, our active duty military personnel and their families are not receiving healthcare benefits.

The shutdown has also placed strain on the family’s already tight finances, as basic necessities like groceries and gas were no longer available on base. They just don’t have the spare money right now to make this trip.

So we turn to you, friends, family, and even complete strangers, in the hopes that we can raise enough money to cover the costs for a family member to drive Janesta to San Antonio and stay in a nearby hotel during her surgery.