If you’ve visited my blog before, you are used to seeing fan convention coverage and movie reviews – stuff that generally allows me to proudly wave my Geek flag. To this point, I have shared little in the way of personal information here. I would like to take a moment to change that and share a bit of myself with you. Many of you have heard me mention here and there about my brother. Please allow me to fill you in.
My brother, at the young and healthy age of 27, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. As one would imagine, my family and I were shocked and astounded. Even the doctors were hesitant to confirm such an unlikely diagnosis. Nonetheless, after countless tests and scans, there it is. The Big C in the corner, casting it’s shadow on an otherwise carefree youngin’.
He was lucky in a way. He qualified for an international clinical trial. This trial uses a combination chemotherapy treatment, including Abraxane and Gemzar. While Gemzar is routinely used in treatment of advanced pancreatic cancer, Abraxane is approved for the treatment of breast cancer. Together, the success in stabilizing or regression of pancreatic cancer has been promising.
He has more than hope! After 8 weeks of treatment, his latest test results and scans showed the cancerous tumors have reduced in size by 10%. Where he was barely able to eat a fist-size portion of food, he has regained his appetite and gained back 11 of the 20+ pounds he had lost during the initial weeks of treatment. The debilitating pain, which often relagated him to hours sitting in a hot shower, has all but subsided.
His general good health and young age pay a significant part in fighting the disease and bolstering his immune system. Perhaps more important, is his mellow attitude and consistent positive outlook. He has always been the laid-back sort and always up for a good time – characteristic which have always made him popular. With the blow to his health, the many friends he has made over the years have come out in droves to show their support. United, they make up Team KP – family and friends who share a genuine love and friendship for my brother and have vowed to stand with him in his fight. Check out Team KP on Facebook.
To date, there is no cure for pancreatic cancer. Sadly, this means my brother will always need treatment. Recently, Team KP hosted a fundraiser to help my brother with the considerable medical costs. Held at Williker’s in Shrewsbury, MA hundreds of family and friends came out to enjoy great food, listen to some great music and win lots of fantastic prizes, ranging from gift certificates to local establishments to tickets to sporting events and vacation packages. All tolled, the event raised more than $15,000.00! Read the press coverage at Community Advocate and TheDailyWestborough.com
If you would like to stay up to date on my brother and the progress of his treatment, visit his blog on Caring Bridge. If you are interested in helping financially, a fund has been set up at Sovereign Bank. You can walk in to any Sovereign Bank to donate or you can mail a check directly to his fund.
Kevin J Phillips Fund – Acct #38604896274
Mail donations to:
Attn: Tim Alves
486 Lincoln Street
Worcester MA 01405
There will be more opportunities to contribute. There are Team KP wristbands, tanks, t-shirts and key chains. Check back here to find out how you can get your hands on these products and more in the near future.
While we may not have met, save for a tweet lost in the data stream of the world wide web, I consider you friend. I have had the great pleasure of meeting a number of you and cementing our friendship offline, and still more of you have made it a point to show caring and concern. I cannot express how truly appreciative I am to know each of you. Thank you for your thoughts, prayers and support.