×

CaringBridge Is Funded by People Like You

Make a donation to CaringBridge

Honor Justin with a tax-deductible contribution to CaringBridge today.

Click here to make your donation.

Justin’s Story

Justin is the middle triplet in a traveling circus family known as the Flying Condolucis!  Seriously, Justin is the greatest kid you could ever meet who just happens to have had cancer, four times, and has every intention of being cancer-free and becoming a pediatric oncologist when he grows up.  He is also a devoted Boston Red Sox fan, theatre geek and dog lover.  This is his journey, thanks for following along...On April 11, 2007 Justin was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) and fell into the standard risk, pre-b category.  He spent the next 3.2 years in treatment at the Valerie Center at Monmouth Medical Center.On a routine check-up on December 13, 2010, six months off-treatment, it was discovered that had relapsed.  His treatment was moved to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.  He underwent 1 year of intense chemo, 22 rounds of radiation and 1 year of maintenance chemo.  He completed treatment on March 1, 2013. On June 4, 2013 we got the horrible news once again, Justin had relapsed.  He underwent intensive chemo again which lead to some serious complications but got him to the point where he could receive a bone marrow transplant.  On September 26, 2013 Justin's sister Annie underwent the painful process of retrieving stem cells from her hip bone and later that day that precious gift of live-saving cells were infused into Justin.  He remained in the hospital for 9 weeks and continues with follow-up clinic visit to CHOP.  Sadly, on June 26 2014, exactly 9 months post-transplant a spinal tap was performed and we learned Justin has relapsed again.  He will likely participate in an experimental protocol called CART-19 at CHOP..  "When you pass through the water, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.  When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you." Isaiah 43:2

Latest Journal Update

The Midst of the Storm

Sunday afternoon Justin began to feel the effects of the t-cells and by Monday morning he had a fever, so off to CHOP we went. Standard protocol is to start IV antibiotics for the fever in case of infection even though everyone knows its not an infection but the much anticipated cytokine release syndrome ( aka The Storm).  The antibiotics lead to diarrhea which has led to two sleepless nights thus far.  In regards to the CART 19 therapy, so far Justin has has a text book reaction.  Wait!  What?  I don't believe I've ever uttered those words regarding Justin & his cancer treatment!  While the doctors are encouraged we are all awaiting the "well, we've never seen that before with Cart therapy" reaction that Justin has become famous for.  Where are the fireworks?  When do we get to try out the new crash cart & epi pens?  Come on Justin, do something exciting: grow a tail, perhaps?  Or have your tongue change color?  Suddenly become fluent in French!  This standard response is soooo boring!

So, fevers, vomiting, headaches, body aches, and low counts - all expected. Justins hemoglobin dropped significantly overnight & they will likely give him a transfusion tomorrow if it drops any lower.  His blood pressure has been low at times, but he's gone lower in the past so, again, he's being closely monitored.  Every familiar face we see keeps congratulating him on getting his t-cells & are so happy to see him reach this milestone!

Keep up the prayers, and the love, and the support!  In the midst of the storm, we are feeling truly blessed!

"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials". James 1:2

"We have known and believed the love that God has for us.  God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him."  1 John 4:16






heart
22 people hearted this

Comments

15 Comments

Marianne Meccia
By Marianne Meccia
Yay!
Jennifer Green
By Jennifer Green
Praying for Justin's reaction to the therapy to continue to be boring, for his blood pressure to stabilize, and for the diarrhea to stop.
Jennifer Green
c.o.l.e's prayer team
www.colesfoundation.org/
Rick Bloom
By Rick Bloom
My prayers continue to be with you all!
Carla Richardson
By Carla
I'm praying for Justin and your family. Praise God for his love and care. God Bless!
chris raike
By Chris raike
Wow! Praise the Lord for His mercies and blessings!
Praying for healing and success in Cart......

Gives Casting Crowns song,"Praise You In the Storm" personal meaning....
Jack McDonald
By Pastor Jack McDonald
Praising God for the good news and the encouragement He given by it. Continuing to pray for strength and grace in the midst of the storm.
Craig Baxter
By Pastor Craig
Wonderful news and ever so wonderful verses...especially at this time! Praying.
Kathryn Petrone
By The Petrones
Prayers out to you!!
Much love, The Petrones
Kathleen Wilson
By Kathleen Wilson
Faith will right your ship in the midst of the storm.
"In His Grip"
Barbara Borden
By Bb
Praying ..,, anything i could do for family ,, let me know