Connie’s Story

Site created on July 12, 2020

This Caring Bridge page has been set-up to help keep those who love Connie Calmes Szakovits updated on her condition and know how to best support her and her family during this very difficult time.  Please share the link to this page so that others can use this site to keep updated, relieving Norm, Chloe and Cathy of this time consuming task.

For several weeks Connie had been experiencing some extreme fatigue, persistent headaches, and confusion. On Monday, June 29, 2020 Connie, Norm and Chloe made the decision that Norm would take Connie to the Emergency Room. After tests were run at Flower Hospital that morning, the doctors determined Connie had a very large brain tumor behind her left eye. From there she was transferred to Toledo Hospital’s ICU and taken into emergency surgery at 5:30 p.m. to remove the tumor.

After surgery her doctors concluded that Connie had grade four glioblastoma, a very fast growing and aggressive brain cancer. They suspected the tumor had been growing for the last 6-8 months.

Connie remained in the neurological ICU for the next several days as she recovered from surgery. Due to COVID-19 precautions only Norm was allowed to see her and remained by her bedside. On Monday, July 6, 2020 Connie was transferred to a rehab facility at University of Toledo Medical College of Ohio. Now out of the ICU, Chloe and sister Cathy were able to visit her. 

The tumor left Connie with trouble moving the right side of her body and trouble remembering words. In rehab Connie began physical, speech and occupational therapy several times a day. Therapies helped her improve her speech deficits and to compensate for the absence of control of her right side. She was able to feed herself, complete basic tasks on her own, and flip the bird at the camera when saying hi to her sisters. 

On Monday, July 13th, Connie was readmitted to the ICU due to a drop in blood pressure and decreased level of consciousness.  There were multiple tests completed to determine the cause of these changes.  We learned that Connie had an infection as well as an extremely low platelet count, putting her at increased risk of bleeding.  There could be several causes for this, including the anti-seizure medication.  After a family conference with the surgeon, Connie and Norm made the decision to focus on comfort and quality of life.

On Thursday, July 16th, Connie came home to be with Norm, Chloe, Kip (her dog) and Oscar (her cat).  She has hospice support from Promedica Hospice.

Our family would like to thank everyone so much for the outpouring of love for Connie. This news has been challenging beyond words but we’re continuing to take this one step at a time and are grateful for the support she has received. We will continue to post news-worthy updates to this page as they happen.

In the past few weeks many have asked how they can help. On the “Planner” tab of Connie’s CaringBridge site we can post jobs or tasks that our family needs assistance with. We will keep that up to date as things occur to us. In the meantime, please keep Connie in your prayers.

Thank you,

The Szakovits and Calmes Families



P.S. If you'd like to leave a message for Connie or the family, you can do so under the "Well Wishes" tab at the top.

Newest Update

Journal entry by Kelsey Miklos

Hi all,

Connie's obituary was printed in the Toledo Blade today and will also be in the Saturday edition of the paper. You can view it online here.

There will be a mass tomorrow at St. Patrick's of Heatherdowns at 11:00 a.m. Masks and social distancing are required. The mass will be live streamed on the "ToledoStPats" Youtube channel if you would prefer to join us from a distance. 

 

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