Boyd Graham Family Contribution Fund

For: Boyd Graham
Organizer: Susie Verdier, Matt Verdier
Boyd Graham Family Contribution Fund (Boyd Graham)
of $20,000 goal.
Raised by 203 donors
76% Complete
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

Many of you know and love Boyd and his wife Claire. Some of you may not know them so I'll tell you a little about them.

Boyd served our country in the Marines and then the Army for a total of eight years before joining the police force sixteen years ago. Claire teaches Biology at a local high school. They are both dedicated public servants. They have been married for 5 years. 

Boyd and Claire are a wonderful couple that struggled to have a child together. After many expensive tests and procedures, Boyd and Claire succeeded and Archer was born last June. After his birth, Boyd and Claire went about their business of raising Archer and his half brother. If the story ended there it would be a happy one.

Not long ago, Boyd began experiencing stomach pain that he attributed to gall bladder problems. After many expensive tests, consultations with several baffled specialists, and other procedures, it was determined that Boyd has Adenocarcinoma which consisted of one baseball sized tumor and a few other smaller tumors that were limited to a single lobe of his liver.

It was decided to resect the affected lobe of the liver and then begin a course of Chemotherapy. The surgeon soon discovered that the cancer was not limited to a single lobe of Boyd's liver. Boyd's liver and his entire abdominal cavity was also covered with tumors too small to be detected. The surgeons closed Boyd up and sent him to recovery and gave Claire the tragic news.

Boyd's prognosis is grim. At this point it is still to be determined if Chemotherapy would be advantageous at all.

Boyd and Claire have already used up most of their savings to have Archer and both used most of their leave from work after his birth. They both expected to have a lifetime of joy and to pay off those costs. Now they are faced with the stark reality of little Archer, his half-brother Luke, and his grown half-sister Maralyn losing their father and Claire her beloved husband.

Many of you have sent thoughts and prayers and asked how you can help. You can help by making a donation to Boyd and Claire by using this website. This will help pay for his medical bills, and buy time for Claire to take leave-without-pay from work to spend as much time as possible with her husband in this terrifying time. If you can, please do and thank you for your time.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on May 24, 2013

Posted on May 24, 2013

From Boyd: An update for those of you following my saga: The Not-so-Young and Cancer Ridden. I had a CT scan of my abdomen last week to determine the effect of the chemotherapy so far. Yesterday we went and spoke to the Doctor about what he saw on the scan. Although the tumor on the liver showed some growth, approximately half a centimeter in six weeks, he said that one possibility was that it could be swelling due to necrosis of the tumor from the inside, which would be a good thing. All other internal organ functions seemed to be operating within parameters, and he was encouraged by some of the things I am able to do such as eat and get out of the house every day. I’m back up to my pre-C weight, although the distribution leaves a bit to be desired. The way I look at it, after remission I can work to move it from the midsection back to the chest and arms. Right now I’m just storing energy. Anyhow, back to chemo next week for four more weeks, then assess again. Overall, not definitive and not miraculous, but not too bad either.

From Claire: Today is Boyd's birthday. He's never been very into celebrating his own birthday. So rather than hearing dozens of "Happy Birthday" messages from his friends, he asked for something particular. I am posting it here for a couple of reasons. 1) I want to show off a little - my beloved husband is just THIS amazing. and 2) it would be a lovely gesture if even half of his followers/supporters would carry this on in his honor.
I am going to ask a favor of all my FB friends. Tomorrow is my birthday. It does not, though, feel like much of a birthday. Between the memorial service for Kirk and the general feelings of pain and malaise caused by the cancer and chemotherapy I am just happy to make it to 47, and otherwise want to let the day pass unremarkably.

Besides, so many of you have already done nice things for me and my family in the past couple of months. All the kindnesses shown have been like an early, eye-opening birthday. There’s nothing I really want or need, unless you have the cure for cancer written down somewhere and just forgot to turn it in.

So, here’s my request: Instead of posting a happy birthday platitude on my wall, do something nice for a random person. It can as simple as holding a door or smiling at them. It can be as thoughtful as paying for their coffee at the checkout line or picking up something that they dropped but didn’t notice. It could as huge as paying off their mortgage or student loan, (although that seems a bit over the top and if you are prone to doing that kind of thing we should hang out more.)

Then, sometime during the day, post on my wall and tell me what you did. I smile much more these days, and I smile for the simple things that happen in life. By making somebody else happy you could make me smile, and that’s much more my definition of a happy birthday."

Posted on May 16, 2013

Posted on May 16, 2013

Greetings from the Graham family,

It has been awhile since our last update. Boyd intends to write to the wonderful people supporting him, but he is very often too exhausted. When he isn’t exhausted he tries to make the most of the time – spending it with me, playing with our baby, or going to his older son’s little league games. It appears that his “new normal” is to have energy in the beginning of the day, say from 8 to 11am, and then he is completely wiped out (napping) until evening. We learned several weeks ago that I need to wake him up for more food at around 1pm or else he won’t get that evening energy.

Yesterday, Boyd had a CT scan of his abdomen to see if these past 6 weeks of chemotherapy have been working. The news we get at our follow-up appointment next week will be one of three possibilities: 1) it hasn’t been working at all, the tumor is bigger, and we need to find another treatment and again hope to make progress before it is too late; 2) It has been working; the tumor is smaller, and he needs to jump right into another 6 weeks of treatment; or 3) stalemate, the tumor is the same size and the doctor can decide to keep with the same drug cocktail or try something different.

Boyd has run out of his accrued leave from work. Luckily his employer does have a sick bank that Boyd was a part of, so we may still count on a couple more paychecks for him. I am unpaid until I can return to work. This fundraiser is a huge help so we don't have to worry (just yet) about losing the house, or being able to pay all of the incoming bills.

We are struggling to stay positive. Boyd has abdominal pain all the time that is managed by medication. It has been with him since January. Long term pain can be demoralizing; an uncertain future certainly is. But he has promised me and stated plainly to the doctors that no matter what the scan says he is going to keep fighting. He is not ready to give up.

Thank you.

Posted on April 30, 2013

Posted on April 30, 2013

Tomorrow begins his third session of chemotherapy. We've learned a few things on this journey:
1. chemo causes a LOT of laundry. Boyd sweats excessively these days and that affects both clothing and linens. I have been so busy caring for him and Archer that the laundry piled up pretty bad. Then with the crisis of him being in the hospital -There is a laundromat in town will wash and fold at the rate of $1 a pound. Worth every penny.
2. Its best to let him eat what he can, when he can. With that "anything goes" philosophy Boyd has been able to maintain the same weight from the begining to now in spite of those days of being so sick. He rebounds well.
3. After seeing him rebound so well with just supportive care (IV hydration) in the ER and then in the hospital, I had the idea to ask for a home care infusion nurse to come to the house and give him IV fluids in the days after each chemo session. After speaking to Boyd, our primary care doctor, and the insurance-appointed case manager I am going to have my wish! I think that this will do him so much good and stave off the downward spiral of nausea/not eating.
Hopeful for tomorrow! He's fighting hard.

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