Welcome to Renee'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.
Just upon turning 33 years old, Renee was diagnosed with Stage III Cervical Cancer. Renee was married on September 16, 2017 to Casey Vanvleet. She has three children: Robert (13), Cooper (8), and Savannah (6). She also has two step children: Drew (20) and Lola (8). The family resides in Cambridge, MN.
How it all started: Over a few weeks time, Renee had been to the doctor and chiropractor multiple visits for terrible back pain that was affecting her daily activities. After first diagnosing the problem as Sciatica, she knew that the pain was only getting worse. Renee returned to the clinic and was then diagnosed with possible Bursitis. Prednisone and pain killers were prescribed, but similar to her past experience, very little pain relief progress was being made. The pain then got so bad that Renee returned to the Emergency Room. There they treated her for what seemed like kidney stones on the right side of her body. After a CT scan was performed, it showed no kidney stones, but she did have an infected kidney. Along with this diagnosis, a pelvic exam was conducted and staff realized there was gas and air in parts that they didn't usually belong in. The pelvic exam also indicated that there was an abnormality on Renee's vaginal walls.
Allina Health in Cambridge did not have the team that it required to meet all her needs, so it was at this time that Renee got ambulanced down to Mercy Hospital. Staff at Mercy immediately started treating the known kidney infection. On January 16, 2019, another pelvic exam was done at Mercy, which was the moment that the doctor discovered a mass on Renee's cervix. The next step was a biopsy of the mass to verify that it was cancer. Once analyzed, these results did tell Renee that she in fact had cancer.
Following this discovery, Renee had a pet scan to determine the location of the cancer, as well as the severity. She left that appointment filled with emotions, including anticipation for the next day's results. Casey and Renee met with the oncologist on January 23, 2019. Together, they received the news that her cancer was in stage III, which would require chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Before this could be done though, Renee needed to first get into a Urologist for her kidney that was holding urine. Because the tumor was so large, it was pushing up against the kidney and other parts; therefore causing the excruciating pain she had felt for weeks. A stent was placed inside during a same day surgery, thus releasing some of that pressure and liquid.
Future steps include: Renee will need 28 treatments of radiation, mixed with low dose chemotherapy. These sessions will be Monday-Friday for a total of 5-6 weeks. After the treatments are completed, a pet scan will be performed again in three months. This will be the day she finds out if the tumor has gotten smaller and has hopefully not spread to other parts of her body. Checkups will occur often for the next three years, then followed by every six months. At this point we are hoping for cancer free results. Fingers crossed and keep saying those prayers.
Renee has always been a hard worker throughout her life; she currently works at the Crystal Bar and Grill, where she has been for over 12 years. On top of being a reliable employee, Renee is ultimately giving, ambitious and a go-getter, and prideful in providing for her family. She also would do anything for anyone. Renee has been in so much pain that she has missed several shifts at work, not to mention the pile of medical bills that have and will occur over the next few years. She wants to remain working as much as possible, but the frequent appointments and radiation/chemotherapy will limit that. As a community, as friends and family, I feel like we are presented with an opportunity to give back and help Renee and her family as much as we can. This page will help us stay updated on her health condition and provide an additional site for support for Renee.
Renee's benefit information is shown below. If you can't attend and would like to donate, monetary amounts are accepted at Spire Credit Union in Mora, MN. Once at the bank (or over the phone if applicable) you must tell them that it goes in Renee Vanvleet's account titled "Team Renee". You may also drop cash or a check off at the Crystal Bar and Grill in Mora, MN where the benefit is taking place.
Bake Sale Silent Auction Beer Bust Live Auction Live Music
A great day of Events planned for an Amazing young lady❣️
**All donations can be brought to the Crystal Bar**
Thank you so much! Renee is ready to kick cancers ass!