Before he had this surgery, John was required to go through several of months of intense chemo and radiation to shrink the tumor. As he is single, John chose to do this is Kansas City, where two of my other brothers live with their families. Typical of John (a runner in his fifties), he chose to continue running during his chemotherapy. He also continued his job from my brother's home in Kansas City, as he was able.
When John returned to Mayo after chemo and and radiation, we all had an amazing surprise. The tumor was gone.There was no reason to do the reconstructive surgery. Even his doctors were astounded.
John has been back for regular check-ups at Mayo ten times. I have four brothers and one or more of us usually go with him. It has been deeply touching to see how well we could all pull together to do our part to help him. I think this is my sixth visit here with John in the last several years.
John has continued to work during the majority of this time in his job as Assistant Director and editor of several publications for the National Federation for High School Activities in Indianapolis, Indiana. While he isn't able to run anymore (that knee thing!), he exercises six times a week, eats well and does everything he can to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Yesterday we got good news. John is again in remission. I am exhausted but thrilled and relieved. He has done his part toward getting well and his doctors at Mayo have been incredible. My other brothers and I also know each other again as adults, and that is a true gift of John's illness. But, mainly, I thank God for his recovery. There are some things that cannot be explained.