Co-Workers Start Go Fund Me for Gentle Giant

garydeckardThe following was written by Hot Springs Case Manager Dana Worth about Gary Deckard.

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Gary Deckard, the husband to Brenda for 40 years. Gary Deckard, our coworker for 30-plus years.

As Brenda said “I have stood beside and behind my friends who have suffered from the evil disease of CANCER, but have not expected it to hit home.”

Our Gentle Giant, ‘Big G’, was diagnosed with esophagus and stomach cancer in February.  Gary was starting his work day, when he became violently sick and started throwing up blood.  A doctor, that has known Gary for more than 30 years came to assist him quickly, along with many other co-workers.   He was rushed to ER and then to Intensive Care, where the GI doctor, ICU doctors, and all of the ICU staff worked feverishly to save him.

During the next several weeks, Gary and his family received the final diagnosis and the treatment plan – four rounds of chemotherapy and then a planned surgery to remove the lower esophagus, the cancerous stomach, and get a gastrostomy feeding tube on July 13.  After this surgery, Gary would have to endure another round of chemotherapy.  But that plan did not happen.  Gary did have surgery on July 13, but the doctor was not able to do any of the planned surgery due to discovering that his cancer had metastasized to the liver.

To add to this devastating news of liver metastasis, Gary found out that he will no longer be employed by mid-August.  In order to continue to have insurance, Gary will need to pay for COBRA insurance.  The COBRA monthly premium will be $1200.

Gary and his family has endured many disappointments over the last five months, but the latest news of losing his job along with not being able to have the surgery is devastating.   Medical bills will continue to come in and will need to be paid, as he continues this fight.

Gary is a quiet soul – a man of few words.  He has been the positive, faithful and uplifting spirit for his family.  But now it is our turn to be the positive, faithful and uplifting spirit for his family.  As Gary says, let’s take it “one day at a time.”

Will you consider helping Gary and his family?

We would like to ask all of the Deckard’s friends,  co-workers, and extended family to give to the Big G.  The goal is to raise $8,000 to help cover COBRA premiums for at least 6 months.