September 15, 2006 – December 2, 2015
Gage is my great nephew. He is an 8 year old boy who was diagnosed on January 7, 2015 with DIPG- diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, an inoperable brain tumor. He started his first set of aggressive chemo and radiation treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN on January 22nd, and finished his last treatment on March 4th. He went back to St. Jude’s on March 30 for further testing and MRI. He started another set of chemo pills on April 1, 2015 and will take 7 days of the chemo pill every month. The result from the last MRI was that the left side of the tumor has shrunk, but they could only say that the right side was very aggressive. He went back to St. Jude’s at the end of April and then again in June. On the April visit they still could not tell if the tumor was growing, so another trip was made in June. The June trip led us to hearing what we did not want to hear. The right side of the tumor has grown and now is very aggressive. By now the tumor has affected his sight, hearing, he stays either very cold or extremely hot, his right side has lost a lot of strength, his right leg and foot is very cold and a grayish color, and he can no longer control his body functions. The high dose of steroids made him gain almost 80 pounds. He is unrecognizable. The doctor is worried about blood clots. The doctor gave Zane, his dad, 2 options. Try another experimental treatment or a pill can be given to him at home.
That was it. Zane decided to take Gage to Mexico for treatment at the Bio Clinic & Hospital in Tijuana, Mexico. Gage will return from there on August 7. So far this has been the best & most seen of improvement of all the treatments. Before Gage left on July 17, 2015 he was walker/wheelchair bond, his right side went numb & he could no longer feed himself. The first 3 days were bad. On day 4 he got up out of a chair by himself and walked without a walker and only using one hand to hold onto his daddy’s arm. Day 5 (wonderful day) I got a video of him feeding himself with his right hand and a video of him walking on a treadmill. He has lost a few pounds, and he doesn’t look so swollen. I would suggest to any parent that is going through this with a child to look at this treatment in Mexico.
Gage is the oldest of 4. Gage (8) Miley (7), Eli (4) and Sophia (16 mths). He is the most selfless, caring little boy. Anyone that meets him instantly falls in love with his sweet smile. He is very outgoing and imaginative, loves to be outside, and loves building and working on things with his daddy. He loves monster trucks and got to go to Monster Jam for the first time while he was at St. Jude-he loved it! Max-D is his favorite monster truck driver. If anyone in the world deserves a miracle, it’s this precious boy so with many continued prayers, we know God can heal him!
Following an 11 month courageous battle, Gage gained his angel wings on December 2, 2015.
You can read more about Gage on his facebook page, Get Well, Gage.
Submitted by Carmen Headen, Gage’s Great Aunt