On Jan 30th, one year ago, my oldest son Mikel and I flew from Tucson, AZ to Omaha, Nebraska for Mikel to donate the stem cells to his younger brother Scott for a Bone Marrow Transplant. I remember it so well. We left Tucson early in the AM,,,,the weather was beautiful and warm. We landed in Denver and had a short layover before we continued on to Omaha. We landed in Omaha around 4pm and the temperature was ZERO!!!!!! What a SUDDEN change.. We both almost froze to death. Mikel's Uncle Larry and Aunt Judi Johnson met us in the baggage area. Fortunately, they had their car right out front and it was running with the heater "Blasting away"!!!
This is how it looked the next day...................Burrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!! It was COLD!!!
We drove from Omaha to Lincoln to visit Scott and Ann. Mikel hadn't seen him for a year or more and I hadn't seen him for 4 months. As most of you know, Scott was diagnosed with Leukemia on Oct 4TH, 2007 and needed a Bone Marrow transplant. It was discovered that his older brother Mikel was a "perfect" Match. Scott is on the left and Mikel is on the right. Scott has his cat "Megabyte" on his lap....... He was quite sick and had lost 0ver 70 lbs. Of course, as you can see, he had lost all his HAIR from all the Chemo treatments.
So I brought him a HAIR HAT from Arizona. Now he had HAIR!!! We had a ball with it. I felt so sorry for Scott, he felt so lousy, but he did his best to have a good time. He was cheerful and his attitude was good. It sure was GREAT having 2 of my 3 boys together. We had a fun afternoon, but had to get back to Omaha for the Stem Cell Draw from Mikel.
Above is Mikel all hooked up to the special machine that took blood out of one arm, removed the Stem Cells and returned the blood into the other arm. It can take up to 4 hours, but Mikel completed the process in 2.5 hours. We later found out that they had all the Stem Cells they needed and they were a 10 for 10 perfect match for Scott. WONDERFUL,,,great Job Mikel!!!! Oh, we were all so HAPPY to get those results but as most of you know, even with all the good news and the perfect match, Scott lost his battle with cancer in June of last year. That was one of the saddest times of our lives.
This is our LAST DAY in Retama Village in Mission, TX. We are departing tomorrow morning about 8-9am. Should make it about 400 miles to somewhere West of Del Rio on Hwy 90. Plan on boondocking, so Internet connections may be sparse. By Tuesday evening we hope to be at the Dreamcatcher SKP park in Deming, NM.
We will miss all our great friends here at Retama and thanks to everyone for the great "going away" party on Friday afternoon. It's been enjoyable, but I'm looking forward to getting to the Desert and the Mountains. I like it out in the country. North Ranch SKP Park at Congress, AZ is just that. We have thousands of acres of BLM land to roam. We have a Polaris 400 ATV there and our neighbors, Paul and Nancy Wilson, have 4 ATV's. We explore the back country right out our back door all the time....take off riding in the morning and don't get home until late afternoon. Plus, I like to shoot pistols and keep my accuracy current. Ms Pat also enjoys shooting and we can go just a short distance and shoot anytime we wish.
|From Mike & Pats Travels|
Here we are out on one of our adventures enjoying the superb weather and the WIDE OPEN spaces!!! Paul and Nancy know this area extremely well and I love to just RIDE and RIDE... Gee, I can hardly wait...........
Lots more to do to get ready to go, better get busy! See you somewhere down the road. Thanks for stopping by and I'd sure be glad to hear from you.
It's a GREAT WEEK!!!!!!
Remember, tell your kids you love them, they may not be around forever.
This Blog published every Sunday and Wednesday.
I cannot imagine losing one of my kids, even though my son has chosen a course in life that has left us without communication in several years. Hopefully some day that will change.
Have a safe trip west, we look forward to seeing you soon.
We love you guys and your positive attitudes. You are the best! :)+
Gee, Mike and Pat -- we somehow missed checking all of our regular blogs yesterday. I'm glad you were still here this morning. Like Nick, we can't imagine losing a child, but now we have another friend whose daughter is in final stages of brain and spinal column cancer, at the age of 45. You remember Gene and Cheri, I'm sure, from the first and second Arizona Gypsy Journal rallies.
You have blessed us all with your honest and painful reporting of Scott's journey. Thank you for sharing so openly.
Mike & Pat, I have been following your blog for awhile now and prayed for all of you when your son had cancer. Please pray for a friend of mine who was just diagnosed with brain and lung cancer. She is like a mom to me since my mother passed away. Thanks. Happy travels. Janis
Thanks EVERYONE!!! We appreciate it!!! Jan, we will sure keep your friend in our prayers!!!
God Bless you all!! Hugs!
Mike & Pat
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