Orin "Skip" Holtan

First post: Feb 18, 2017 Latest post: Sep 27, 2017
Welcome to Orin's CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.

For those of you who have not been aware of the story. Orin "Skip" Holtan has been fighting a stubborn battle with stage 4 glioblastoma brain cancer since October of 2015. Within the time since then he did not want a Caring bridge site as he is not one to discuss his maladies, unless it was caused by a table saw, or years of using a hammer in many things he has built causing full joint replacements. The year and a half since then has been a great adventure for him, literally, that has packed many stories for us to talk about. The message in his adventure is determination. He is not going to give up until he has no choice. After having the majority of his tumor removed surgically, he went through months of radiation and chemotherapy that did wonders for the cancer, but it had it's share of side effects and tolls taken on his being. At this point he has considerable mobility limitations due to the wearing down of his body. He tries though. Every single day. He also has pretty severe symptoms of dementia at current moments. Past memories are  pretty good and he has those great experiences he has been through still with him. Mom has really done an admirable job trying to care for him but at this point we are going to have to explore the near future and what it holds for dad. Determination can be seen in all aspects of dad. Those who know of his Florida 2017 adventure, you can attest to his stubbornness. And yesterday after trying to pick up apples in the back yard at home on a nice February day, as he always was doing things like that to keep busy, he slipped and fell hitting the back of his head sustaining a laceration that bled pretty well. Well, as dad does, he picked himself up and went inside the house. After the EMT's brought him to Fairview Ridges in Burnsville to address the concussion. It was then that dad started to have issues moving his right arms and both legs. They sent him up to Regions hospital in St. Paul to their Trauma unit for further examination. After most tests showed minimal reasons he should be having this lack of movement, mom got the doctors to complete an MRI. After this MRI it was discovered that dad had a large blood clot on his C3 or C4 vertebrae on the back of his neck. He was immediately sent into surgery to take care of the bleeding and make sure no other issues were involved. Dad got through that and after a long night last night, he is settled into the Surgical ICU at Regions hospital. He currently has gotten some mobility back but has great pain from the surgery and confusion that seems to be something that will be the new normal. Not sure what and when the next few days and weeks will hold, but any support and prayers would be great appreciated for a great man. We spent a few hours up there today so mom could go home and get some things together for herself. Of course, with dad, he always has a joke in there and even though he thinks he is currently at home, he still is insistent that he should be doing something. So, that is where he is today and most assuredly, the way ahead will include much rehabilitation and oh yeah, his regular monitoring of his cancer that he has been able to fight off. If you would have asked him LAST February, he would have told you based on the initial diagnoses, that he didn't know if he would have lasted until then. But, as is with dad, determination is never-ending. Thanks for visiting and mom wanted me to start this because it is getting very hard for her to get back to everyone to give updates. Not sure who will update and when but please share dad' s story so mom and him can get plenty of prayers to help their journey.


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