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On Tuesday, May 16, 2017, Dave and Charlotte were doing what they normally do on Taco Tuesday - playing cards with their good friends and eating tacos. When it was Dave's turn to deal, he got confused and didn’t know what to do.
Phyllis called the next day while Dave was out riding his bike and convinced Charlotte to get him checked out. Thought maybe he’d had a mini-stroke.
There were spots on his CT scan and MRI. They admitted him for testing and scheduled a full body scan and a brain biopsy. They were looking for cancer. They thought maybe they would find cancer somewhere else that had spread to the brain.
Dave was pretty calm for someone about to get a biopsy. He stayed positive and upbeat. When asked if he was nervous, and he said no, nothing he could control, and that Charlotte was nervous enough for both of them.
The official diagnosis is Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM). It is an aggressive primary brain cancer that is considered Stage IV regardless of when it’s diagnosed.
They said that the tumor is in multiple areas and the plan is to do radiation 5 days per week for 10-15 minutes per treatment for six weeks and also a chemo pill once per day. We thought that the first treatment was scheduled for 5/31, but it was just a fitting for the mask.
On June 1 Dave took his granddaughter Emily shooting. They shot hand guns and rifles at the outdoor range in Columbiaville.
Later that afternoon they pulled the trailer out to Krytal Lake Campground. They’d stay through Sunday. Everyone had a great time. Michelle and Emily were there, and David, Holly, and the kids also set up a tent. Julie & Julien, Melissa, Brandon, & Cody, and Judy, Brian, & Taylor all came out to visit.
Dave kayaked around the lake with Emily, we listened to a band play, and danced to one of Dave’s favorite songs, “Lady in Red”.
On June 5, the stitches were supposed to be taken out, but they didn’t, he had an infection. They did a culture and gave antibiotics.
On June 12, the doctors took him back into the surgery room to clean up the wound since the infection hadn’t cleared up yet. This set radiation back at least two more weeks. He also started to get weaker.
Dave and Charlotte went with David Allen and Holly to the Tigers game on 6/15 for David Allen’s birthday.
Dave finally got his stitches out on 6/27, but that he gets weaker every day. For some reason he’s losing mobility in his left side so he tends to drag his foot.
On the morning of 6/28 Dave had an MRI scheduled, but when they got there, the doctor sent them over to Genesys and admitted him. He wants to try to drain some of the fluid off of his brain. The increased pressure may be what’s causing him to decline faster.
On 6/30 the doctor’s said he has a MRSA infection. The treatment is a long course of antibiotics and will set treatment back another six weeks. On 7/1 they went into surgery again to drain more fluid.
With treatment delayed and Dave continuing to get weak, Charlotte made the decision to take Dave home, like he wanted. Hospice will be helping with his care.
If you would like to visit, just let us know. As of 7/10 Dave is doing well at home, he is generally in good spirits, and alert.