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Justin’s Story

Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We've created it to keep friends and family updated on Justin's progress.

Justin began experiencing abnormal headaches and ended up going to the ER.  They sent him home stating it was probably stress.  He went the next day to see Dr. Berge in Clear Lake and explained his symptoms.  Thankfully, Dr. Berge scheduled an MRI.  Justin was immediately notified there was a brain tumor located in his right front temporal lobe.  Justin met with Dr. Beck, a neurosurgeon at Mercy Hospital in Mason City, IA.  On June 8, 2010 Justin had surgery to remove the tumor.  He made it through the surgery with flying colors.  It was a week later that the pathology results were returned from the Mayo Clinic.  We received devastating news that the tumor was malignant.  He was diagnosed with Brain Cancer, more specifically, Anaplastic Astrocytoma (WHO Grade III).  Justin then met with the oncology team at University of Iowa Hospital to develop an aggressive treatment plan.  On Friday, July 9, 2010 he will have his first test run of radiation treatment, with full treatment, including chemotherapy starting on July 12, 2010.  The radiation treatment will go every day, Monday through Friday, for 6-8 weeks.  Chemotherapy will be every day for the entire duration of radiation, and then further treatment will be evaluated after the radiation is complete.  Justin will be staying at Hope Lodge in Iowa City during his treatment.

Please keep Justin and his entire network of friends and family in your thoughts and prayers through this difficult journey on which we are embarking. 

Your comments and well wishes are appreciated and will help us through this huge battle we are prepared to conquer.

With everyone's help we CAN and WILL will win this fight!

Thank you.

Latest Journal Update

4 years later. Update on my brain!

Hello all!  It's been a few years, so here's a few updates:

Life is good.
I still don't have cancer.  

Many of you know for the last few years I've been working as Program Director for Above + Beyond Cancer, the Des Moines based Non-Profit that takes cancer survivors on awesome transformational adventures.  We recently launched a new website, and I'm taking a hand at blogging on the new site in hopes to bring traffic to the Above + Beyond Cancer website, as well as raising awareness to the cause.  So below is a link to my first blog on our new website :)  Feel free to share it with anyone you think could use some encouragement in their cancer journey.  I sincerely hope it provides some inspiration.

On another note - In September of this year, Alicia and I are headed to MACHU PICCHU, PERU with Above + Beyond Cancer!  We'll be visiting a cancer center in Cusco, Peru and Above + Beyond Cancer actually is going to help them fund the purchase of a new mammography machine to detect breast cancer!  How cool is that?  Once we finish there we'll be leading a team of cancer survivors on the historic Inca Trail Trek to Machu Picchu.  Through this endeavor, we're trying to raise money for Above + Beyond Cancer, and we need your help!  If you'd be willing, you can make a donation (100% tax free) at  We can't thank you enough for the support.

In all seriousness, I couldn't have gotten through all that crazy brain cancer stuff without you guys, and I'm proud to call you my friends and family.  THANK YOU.