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Phil’s Story

Welcome to our CaringBridge site. We've created it to keep friends and family updated. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement during this time when it matters most.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Phil went into the hospital unexpectedly on Monday, January 13, 2014.  He had finished a physical therapy session that morning and had gone to his car, but returned to the office because he was having difficulty operating the car.  His speech was slurred and he was taken to a hospital emergency room.  On Tuesday, January 14th, he underwent surgery for a mass on his brain.  About 90% of the mass was removed during surgery.  He has shown good responsiveness after surgery. There are still far more questions than answers at this point as the results of the biopsy revealed an aggressive brain tumor.

Terri and their children, Noah, Emma, Rachel and Hannah have joined the family at Phil's bedside. Hannah’s boyfriend (Zak) and Rachel’s fiance (Gary) flew home from a work trip to join the family.  The family asks for your prayers and thank everyone for all the support.  They feel truly blessed by the immediate care he's been provided.  We will try to keep you posted as we learn more.

Latest Journal Update

Summer update - The journey is the destination

Sept.1, 2015

Phil here...

Hoping you have enjoyed this summer!

My “journey” and my health have been improving. I am doing well and have enjoyed more time and adventures with my family. On the medical front, my last two MRI brain scans have been “stable” with no further tumor growth. I have been blessed in so many ways. I miss my friends at work but time with my family has been wonderful.

I am continuing my Speech/Language and Cognitive Therapies and will continue monitoring the Glioblastoma with MRI’s every 8 weeks. I still have some daily fatigue (naps are great!), and occasional memory and attention issues, but my vision has continued to improve now that the most recent round of chemo treatments and clinical trials have been completed.

Summer brought some new adventures as we celebrated the wedding of our daughter Hannah to Zak in Madison, WI. To “relax” we traveled and camped as a family to the Grand Tetons, (via the Badlands, Black Hills, and Yellowstone) and concluded with a whitewater rafting trip in Montana. There are more adventures ahead but I have been reminded daily that “the journey is the destination”!

Our family has many journeys ahead, Terri has begun her new responsibilities as a Special Ed. Facilitator in Mpls Schools; Hannah and Zak in Madison, WI were she is a School Social Worker as a Coach in their Positive Behavior Supports program;  Rachel and Gary are closer to home where she is now in the Mpls schools working as an Educational Assistant while expanding her photography business, Emma completed her degree at Augsburg and is now packing for an internship in Australia where she will be certified as a Scuba Diving Instructor, Noah has started his Junior year and enjoying hanging outwith friends and playing basketball. Life is good.

As we prepare for these new journeys we continue to be grateful for each other and the support of our friends. 

Thank you for keeping us in your thoughts and prayers!

Phil and Terri

9 people hearted this



Mike McKee
By Mike McKee
Thanks for the update. It is good to hear of your improvement. Congratulations on enjoying your family milestones--you are busy. Continue to enjoy life and keep being Phil. BTW, I agree naps are great.
jan hanson
By Jan Hanson
It was great to hear your update and about your family celebrations! As another school year begins I wish you new beginnings with your family's. You continue to inspire!
Fran and Maura Roby
By Maura and Fran Roby
So happy to hear of all the good news and the joyful times you have been having as a family! Congrats to Hannah and Zak, and we will continue to send prayers for continued progress your way. Blessings to you all.
Theresa Zamora
By Theresa
ALL WONDERFUL NEWS! So greatful for what God is doing in all of our lives! Praying for you, and others, in each church that we enter, as we travel the Mediterranean. Love you more than you can imagine!
Theresa Zamora
By Theresa
ALL WONDERFUL NEWS! So greatful for what God is doing in all of our lives! Praying for you, and others, in each church that we enter, as we travel the Mediterranean. Love you more than you can imagine!
jaclyn carey
By jaclyn carey
So many adventures and lives to keep up with! It sounds like your summer vacation was wonderful-such a beautiful part of God's amazing earth. 'Stable" is GREAT news Phil, we will take that every 2 months-right? Thinking of you all and continuing to keep you in our prayers for your journeys coming up. Peace, Jaclyn and Brian
Kathy Gould
By Kathy Gould
So glad to get your post Phil and learn of your fun summer adventures - I have been thinking of you as the school year began and am preparing for the PBIS National Leadership Forum. All the best to you and the family in your journeys! Kathy
Kathy Pittelko
By Kathy Pittelko
Phil, so happy to hear that my thoughts and prayers were also for safe travels. I like that. It sounds like you are in an all around grateful state of mind. Peace, Kathy
Carol Wright
This is such wonderful news. So happy that you have enjoyed your great adventure this summer. Life is great and the journey is better. You are such a wonderful brother and role model, not only for your whole family but for all whose paths you cross. Continuing to pray for long journeys for us both.
Jane Cagle-Kemp
By Jane Cagle-Kemp
Such good news, Phil! You have often been in my thoughts and prayers - and will continue to be. So glad you have been making the most of everything and living life to the fullest with your loving family. Memory and attention issues, and daily naps? Sounds like a lot of people I know (including me)! Not to make light of your journey - you have been so positive, strong and faith-filled throughout - something most cannot do as gracefully as you have. May God continue to shower blessings on you!