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Dec 24, 2017 Latest post:
Jan 3, 2018
In August of 2016, Les was diagnosed with bladder cancer. After two months of chemotherapy he underwent surgery in December. The surgeon was pleased with results, saying the cancer had shrunk significantly and twenty two lymph nodes were clear. While recurrence was always possible, this was as good as one could hope for. Les recovered well from the surgery and was delighted to get back to playing tennis. In February and March, Les and Anne traveled in Florida. When they returned home, Les happily cut trees and worked with his tractor. In May he launched Nutmeg in anticipation of a summer of sailing. In June he was happy to welcome grandchild number five, Lucas Dean Sytsma. The summer was full of family, friends, sailing, gardening and tennis. Life was oh so good. At the end of September, friends Eliza and Sid invited Les and Anne to visit with them on Vinalhaven. They had a great sail there on Nutmeg. Les loved hiking on protected lands that he had mostly seen from the water. Looking down from Starboard Rock was awesome. One of those days was so warm that everyone went swimming. On a great sail back to Tenants Harbor, Les felt nauseous. He wondered if he had picked up a bug somewhere but as the days progressed, things got worse. He spent four nights at PenBay where he was diagnosed with Small Bowel Obstruction with a treatment of fasting and low fiber diet suggested. All along Les’ blood work and other tests looked good. The nausea persisted and eventually exploratory surgery revealed a cancer recurrence. His oncologist offered a course in immunotherapy but the nausea increased. Les has always been a strong and optimistic man and he pursued cure and disease management until it became clear that quality of life was the best path to choose. Things have changed rapidly and now Les is in the process of leaving this beautiful earth and so many people who he has loved so deeply. We welcome all your thoughts and memories.