Jack’s Story

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On April 22, 2011, Jack was life flighted to Children’s Hospital Omaha after suffering a life threatening seizure. An MRI showed a lesion in the left temporal lobe. Doctors feared HSV Encephalitis, a life threatening brain virus. A rigorous 21-day treatment followed. Later testing revealed our worst fear--a brain tumor.

On May 20, 2011, a tumor resection surgery was attempted.  Only a small amount of the tumor was removed.  The remaining tumor was declared inoperable.  Pathology revealed a cancerous glioma. During this time, Jack battled the onset of Secondary Epilepsy--a condition caused by the tumor.  After April 22, Jack suffered frequent partial seizures, sometimes upto 10 a day. The seizures persisted despite high dosages of two anti-seizure medications.

Specialists at Children's Hospital Boston were consulted in August 2011. Pediatric Neurosurgeon Liliana Goumnerova indicated that she felt she could likely safely resect the tumor, and at the same time achieve seizure relief by using intraoperative electrocorticography.  Jack's 2nd brain surgery in 5 months occurred at Boston on October 10th.  The second surgery went great.  After surgery, Dr. Goumnerova came out of the operating room smiling.  Dr. Goumnerova removed a golf ball sized tumor.  Nearly all of the tumor was removed, with the possible exception of a small amount of residual near the brain stem.  Thankfully, since the second surgery, Jack has not suffered a single seizure and is doing great clinically.  

In January, Jack traveled to Boston for his first follow-up MRI.  On January 11, 2012, the MRI looked great as the "spot" showed no sign of growth.  Jack's neurologist then aggressively began tapering Keppra.  By March 22, 2012, Jack was down to one anti-seizure medicine.

A 6-month post operation MRI on April 18, 2012 in Boston surprisingly revealed a progression of the "spot." The "spot" is inoperable.  Doctors have now decided that chemotherapy was the next best therapy. Accordingly, Jack had a port surgery on April 26, 2012 and began 60 weeks of chemotherapy on April 27, 2012, at CH Omaha.  His chemotherapy will continue until approximately July 2013.

Jack and his family have received incredible support.  Jack has a very loving family and community.  Nebraska's Rex Burkhead has also helped make people aware of Jack's fight by so graciously wearing a "Team Jack - Pray" wristband during the 2011 and 2012 football seasons. We thank God for his involvement in Jack's life, as well as the thousands of supporters across the country.  God is good.

Jack and his family gives thanks and praise to Jesus for all of Jack's prayer warriors, supporters, and followers.  God Bless you all for your touching and overwhelming support.  


Andy, Bri, Jack, Ava & Reese

Latest Journal Update

Let it snow, Let it snow, Let it ....

In Boston, you cannot see across the street because the snow piles in between are so incredibly high.  And they're getting higher.  What a winter these folks are having. Last night Jack and Dad arrived in Boston around 10:35 p.m., after being placed on their third different connecting flight (the other two were cancelled).  They were extremely fortunate to get into Boston last night, as most of the alternate flights Delta was looking at, ended up getting cancelled this morning.  The good Lord's hands were all over their trip--both in scheduling and safety.  

After a short night's rest, today was a busy day for Jack and dad.  All said, Jack underwent an MRI, EKG, echocardiogram, and two separate doctor's visits. Generally, everything went as well as could be hoped for.  The MRI showed that the tumor remains "stable."  While every parent of a brain tumor child prays for that clean, no evidence of disease MRI, we continue to be thankful for this result.  God is good. So many kids, even after rounds of treatment, cannot get their tumor to be "stable."  We celebrate this news and are so thankful for it.  As important, clinically, Jack continues to please the doctors with how well he is doing. 

Jack and Dad were scheduled to fly back early tomorrow morning, in time to make a 2 p.m. ophthalmology appointment in Omaha (check-up due to tumor location near his optic nerve).  Mother nature and Delta got together and changed all of that again.  Now they are scheduled for a 5 p.m. departure and late arrival into Omaha.  We are just thankful that the airline industry puts emphasis on safe travel.  A little weather is a small price to pay.

Thank you to everyone for your unending prayers for our son Jack.  Thank you also for keeping all of those other childhood cancer families in your prayers as well.  Have a blessed week and we thank you for your support. 

Andy, Bri, Jack, Ava & Reese 

71 people hearted this



Judi Muller
By Judi Muller
Thank you for your update. Thankful for safe travel & a stable MRI report. May God continue to hold you & all the other young patients in His hand. Blessings to you. God is good. All the time. With love.
Diane Morgan
By Diane Morgan
News is good! Prayers for safe travel!
Stacey Petersen
By Stacey Petersen
Great news! Safe travels.
Kathy Uldrich
By Kathy Uldrich
thanks for the update. Prayers for safe journey home. Always praying for Jack and all of your family.
Jean Vinzenz
By Jean Vinzenz
Stable, what a great word! Thank God for stable and safe travels. Continued prayers for Jack and his family and all others fighting!
Susan Lechtenberg
By Susan Lechtenberg
We have been thinking about you on this wintery trip. Praying for safe travel home. Good to hear that the tumor is stable. Sue
Janet Butterfield
By Janet Butterfield
Glad to hear you were able to get there with all the weather reports we were hearing! Thankful the ck-up went well. Praying for other patients and your safe return trip.
Jean Hopkins
Thanks for the updates. Glad to hear all is going as well as can be expected. Praying for total healing for Jack.
Ki Slaymaker
Thank You for the Update. Have a Wonderful Valentines Day & weekend. Hugs. Ki
Randy York
By Randy York and Linda York
Good news, positive vibes and great attitudes are all uplifting. God indeed is good!