By Ann Butler
Health care is much in the news today, but the subject isn’t just about policy discussions and maneuvering – it’s about real families struggling to pay medical bills and living expenses while undergoing treatment for major health problems.
Friends are asking the community to help one such hard-hit family as a mother and son both fight major challenges.
Julie Beckett was diagnosed with acute myoblastic leukemia at the tail end of 2016 and promptly found herself undergoing a 38-day hospital stay complete with chemotherapy and radiation. Then she got the news that her chromosome tests showed she was at risk of a high rate of relapse, which meant she would need a stem cell transplant as well. (Medicine can do some amazing things, can’t it? But that doesn’t mean it’s not scary or an ordeal.)
There is good news as well. This type of leukemia is treatable and curable, and the hospital has found good donor matches for the transplant. But she will need to stay in Denver for four months for this stage of treatment, and ongoing treatment will probably last the rest of the year.
To top it all off, her son, Mark, was recently diagnosed as suffering from epileptic seizures.
Beckett is the sole support of her household, which includes Mark. She hasn’t been able to work since Dec. 28, and all of this treatment is taking place in Denver. That means travel expenses, along with medical expenses and keeping her household going here, including a caregiver to assist her son as he deals with his new medical challenges.
A silent auction and fundraiser to help the Becketts will be held from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at Carver Brewing Co., 1022 Main Ave. You can check out some of the items that will be available on Facebook: Silent Auction and Fundraiser for Julie Beckett.
If you can’t make it to the fundraiser – or even if you can – a GoFundMe account has been established to support the Becketts as they go down this journey at www.gofundme.com/JulieBeckett. And if you want to donate a silent auction item, call Christine Manning at 759-5016.
I know far too well the feeling of drowning financially when the focus should be on healing.
We can’t magically cure Beckett’s leukemia, but we can relieve the stresses of the neverending bills with no matching income coming in.
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