Give Teri New Lungs

For: Teri Starkey
Delano, MN
Organizer: Teri's Family
Give Teri New Lungs (Teri Starkey)
$24,646
of $50,000 goal.
Raised by 213 donors
49% Complete

The Story

Welcome to Teri Starkey's YouCaring site. This site was created as a way to provide financial support to the Starkey family as they embark on a life saving move across country for the future of Teri's health. (Visit http://www.fox9.com/news/265703199-storyto see the story that Fox 9 recently did on Teri's journey)

Teri Starkey (33) is many things. A wife, a mother, a sister, a daughter, and a friend. She was also diagnosed at the age of 14 with Cystic Fibrosis (CF), a cruel and debilitating lung disease that affects every aspect of not only her life, but her family's life as well.

Teri has spent her entire life battling this disease. CF patients are only guaranteed one thing; a life full of compromise, pain, and unpredictability. She could be running errands one day, and be completely bedridden the next. There are times she has such little energy, her husband has to carry her up the stairs to bed. She has coughing fits for hours on end in the middle of the night, usually ending with coughs so intense she vomits. There are panicked rushes to the ER due to massive lung bleeds, routine week-long stays in the hospital, tireless treatment regimens and prescriptions... the list goes on. 

As time has gone on, Teri's lung function has only declined and she has become resistant to most antibiotic treatments usually used in CF patients. It is for this reason her doctor's at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN think that she will likely need a double-lung transplant within the next year. They don't expect her current lungs to last much longer than that due to the widespread infections and years of scarring that CF has caused.

Further complicating matters is the unfortunate rejection by the Mayo Clinic to do the transplant. The surgeons there consider Teri's case to be too high-risk because of a certain bacteria she cultures in her lungs. Luckily, through many calls, emails, and discussions with doctors, Teri has been deemed an eligible candidate at Duke Hospital, in Durham NC.


This is where they need your help. The Starkey's have made the life-changing decision to uproot their family from the only life they have ever known in MN and move across the country, leaving their friends and family behind so that Teri will be able to get a double-lung transplant. 


As you can imagine, this is a huge financial burden not only for her immediate family but also extended family and friends who will be care givers. This is not an easy surgery and will require around the clock care for many months afterwards, as well as medications, doctors visits, unpaid time off work, and childcare. 

Through many discussions with the financial advisors at the hospital and consulting other CF'ers who have gone through this, they have set a goal of $30,000. This is an amount that will ease the financial stress and allow the family to focus on Teri and her recovery.

The Starkey's do not take asking for money lightly. They are so thankful and appreciative for kind words, positive thoughts, and prayers thus far. They have been hesitant to go this route, but now that reality is setting in, they see no other viable option. Your help, in any amount, will mean more to them than you'll ever know. 

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on July 5, 2017

Posted on July 5, 2017

Fox 9 news came to the house today and did a story on Teri. Visit the link below to watch the story... and then donate! 

http://www.fox9.com/news/265703199-story

They forgot to mention this in the news story, but Teri's family and friends are planning a fundraising event for her on the evening of JULY 29th in Litchfield, MN at the Eagles Club. More information will follow, but we have some fun things planned and hope to see many folks there in support of Teri. 

In other updates, Teri has been off of her antibiotics for almost a week and can feel her mucousy cough coming back. We have a trip planned to Durham next week to look at some more houses knowing we will likely need to decide on one while we are there. While there, we might also carve out some time to visit a couple of schools for the kids. It feels like time is flying by as we approach early August when we originally had planned to move by. There are a lot of steps left to take (including getting our house sold), but we are on our way. 

Please share and donate! 

Posted on June 22, 2017

Posted on June 22, 2017

The site has only been live for 10 days and already we have hit 50% of our goal! Unbelievable. Teri and I are truly blessed to have such great people on our side. I said this in the last update, but our expectations continue to be shattered by the kindness that our friends and family have displayed here. Truly amazing. 

One question we have received a few times is "where can I send a check if I don't want to donate on the YouCaring site?". One trade-off of the convenience of this website is that they take a small percentage of the donation to process the payment, so some have inquired about sending a check directly. If you wish to do so, please message me or Teri on Facebook, or contact me at [email protected] and i can send you more information. 

Teri is finishing her last week of IV antibiotics. She had another appointment at Mayo Clinic today to speak with her doctors and see where her lung function is at. Currently her lung function is up a bit from her last appointment, but the downside is that when she comes off of these IVs in a week, she expects her numbers to drop back down again pretty quickly. She'd like to feel joy in hearing that her lung function is up a bit, but is realistic in knowing that it may not last long. I can honestly say she has been so upbeat during this round of IVs and has been trying to take full advantage of these few weeks while she has the extra lung capacity. 

We are still trying to get our house sold as we approach our target of moving by the end of July. We are praying that we get an offer ASAP so we can find a house in Durham and set an actual move date. Without that domino falling first, our plans are sort of up in the air. If anyone knows of someone looking to buy in Delano MN, let us know :) 

Thanks again for your kind words and donations. It will help more than you know. Let's continue to spread the word to reach the next 50% even faster! Dig deep into your networks or social media, or share Teri's story with the people you work with. Tell your boss, your personal trainer, your mailman, your relatives, your ... whoever. Every dollar counts!

Posted on June 14, 2017

Posted on June 14, 2017

Wow! Teri and I would like to thank everyone sincerely for their donations, support, and FB shares thus far. We are in awe of the number of donations and shares we got within these first couple of days. The fundraiser is off to a fantastic start and beyond what we even thought was possible. To those who donated already, we couldn't appreciate you more. 
I wanted to give a quick update on how Teri's health is doing currently. Last week, she spent the week at St. Mary's hospital in Rochester for a "tune-up". This involves getting started on more IV antibiotics, and also getting increased physical therapy treatments (where the pulmonology team claps on her back and chest to help get mucus out). The point of the antibiotics is to knock down some of the infections in her lungs, which helps her breathe a little easier. Even though the meds help with gaining some lung capacity back, they have side effects that make her body feel generally tired and weak. This is the constant trade-off.
The kids and I enjoy this time because she now has the energy to go out and do more active things with us, like going to the park or just playing in the yard. It is always tough to handle the kids' expectations of what she can or can't do because of these ups and downs, but they are pretty understanding when "mommy is having a bad day". They are both quick to fetch her anything she needs or give her hugs when she is in her low times. 
Thank you again for all the shares and support. Please keep those donations coming if you haven't done so. We appreciate every penny. 
- Eric (Teri's husband)

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