Dec 30, 2018 Latest post:
May 28, 2019
Art is a grandfather who has been diagnosed with a squamous cell carcinoma of the sinus. An Air Force veteran, he served in Vietnam and afterwards quietly built a life in Ames Iowa.
In the 1980s he built a pool in the family’s back yard, ensuring many years of poolside fun. In addition to swimming in the summer he enjoyed golf and camping. One of his favorite places to visit was Custer State park in South Dakota and the Boundary Waters in Northern Minnesota. As his children grew he traveled to Missouri and Minnesota to see his oldest daughter graduate with her MSW. When he visited his son in California his favorite part of visiting was experiencing all of the different restaurants and walking along the beach. Whenever he traveled to Kansas City, he would search for the perfect Wizard of Oz keepsake for his youngest daughter.
Active even into his 70s, he began experiencing headaches and blurred vision in November of 2018. After an MRI revealed a growth, he has been traveling to Iowa City for treatment. In February 2019, he had a 14 hour surgery to removed the tumor from the sinus. In order to removed the tumor, Art's entire orbital contents (including the eye) had to be removed, as well as part of his upper palate. A large flap of tissue and muscle was taken from his thigh to rebuild his face. Art was to have 4-6 weeks to heal from surgery and then launch in to curative radiation and chemo therapy. Unfortunately, the cancer had other plans. Art had a few bumps in his healing which took him in and out of the hospital and which delayed the start of the curative treatment. In that short time, the cancer grew back with a vengeance, putting Art back in the hospital in April. While in the hospital, the treating team determined his cancer too aggressive and likely not to respond to curative measures. They gave Art options to do nothing, or to begin palliative care with the goal to reduce symptoms and give him comfort in the time he has left. The doctors say the time left will be measured in months, not years.