Sunday, August 25, 2013

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Encouraging Words

by Don Wright > Keith

In the article about Larry, below, I mentioned my long-time (since 1964!) friend, Don. I received a nice note from his wife, Ardis, and now the note below directly from Don.

I'm posting it here in the hopes that it will encourage Larry and Sherry and, really, any others with health challenges. Don was diagnosed with multiple myeloma ten years ago and is still going strong —so strong that he's looking forward to his next marathon! (Sort of reminds one of Forrest Gump, doesn't it!)

Hi Keith,

What a sweet article!  Thank you for the generous words.

At this moment, about 8:35, we are at Mayo Clinic waiting for an 8:45 doctor appointment.  We come here every 28 days and I "give blood" at 6:00 am.  The most important results are already in, accessible on our laptops, and the news is good again.  The myeloma is still stable, which is our "normal."  Makes me want to run a marathon!  Our next one is in Half Moon Bay, CA, toward the end of September.

The doctor will be pleased too.

Best to you both,


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Unwelcome Diagnosis for Larry

by Larry > Allison > Keith

Early in August, Larry Lammers was diagnosed with mutiple myeloma, a malignant condition of the bone marrow. He is undergoing chemotherapy treatments.

Sherry and Larry Lammers
At the belt sander races,
St. Patrick's Day, 2012
Larry and Sherry have been enjoying their park model on Fifth Street during the Minnesota winters and their lakeside spot back home in Minnesota during the summer since Larry's retirement a few years ago.

They no doubt discovered Rockport 35 RV Park through Larry's sister, Karen Foslien. Karen and Bob were long-time winter residents at the park until cancer ended her life a few years ago. Bob continues wintering at the park.

A former co-worker, neighbor, and good friend of mine, Don Wright, was diagnosed with multiple myeloma ten years ago. Don's a smart guy and tackled the disease with intelligence and vigor. Currently, he's the "poster boy" for an experimental treatment. More significantly, possibly, is the fact that he recently completed running at least one marathon in each of the 50 states!

Don lives in Lake Elmo, Minnesota. He has a blog in which he describes some of the things he's doing to, hopefully, minimize the progression of the disease. So far, everything he, his family, and the medical community are doing has helped him "make every day a masterpiece."

His suggestions for nutrition are not only for those with multiple myeloma but for everyone who eats, says Don. If you'd like to read what he has to say, check out this blog of his:
Some parts might be more technical than you care for, but that's because Don has the "handicap" of being an engineer!

His blog also has lots of other links from which one can learn more of the disease. And a couple of links from CNN while Don was interviewed at races!

We know that Rockport 35 RV Park has lots of wonderful people who will remember Larry and his family in their prayers. May I suggest that you also include Don and his family.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

R.I.P. Sonia Enman

by David > Keith

Sonia Enman
Taken February, 2011
Sonia passed away yesterday afternoon. Her long battle with her cancer is finally over.

Her passing was very peaceful. My daughter Kris and I were with her, holding her hand at the end. She had been under home hospice care since May but she was having a bad time of it this past Wednesday so we moved her to Christopher House Hospice.

She took a turn for the worse on Thursday evening and was unresponsive on Friday and Saturday. I asked for a priest and about 20 minutes after he administered the last rites she was gone. It was like she was waiting for permission to leave on her journey.

Per Sonia's wishes, there will be no funeral or services. If our friends are of a mind, they can make a donation to Hospice Austin. Their website is

Taken February, 2009

Pat and I fondly remember Sonia (and David!)

We always enjoyed the discussions upon chance meetings in the street or in their trailer. I also remember the fun I had playing poker with Sonia and Dave. Sonia wasn't very vocal, but that doesn't mean that she didn't know what she was doing at the card table!

I believe it was early in 2012 that we learned that she had cancer, with little hope for long life due to the advanced state, even when it was first discovered. What a blow to our community and, especially, to the Enman family.

And now she has passed from our midst. Our sympathy to David and their family.

David's address is:
1515 Arusha St.

Round Rock, TX  78664

I'm posting this now, shortly after I received it, so it's available for you to read. I'll post a link to an obituary when I find one. Please check back. Keith

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Alison Declared Disease FREE!

by Allison > Keith

Here is the first paragraph from a letter we received from Allison the other day. I'm posting it here because it is indeed good news and some readers of this site might not have received the letter.

"First, let me say a BIG THANK YOU to all of you who prayed for my healing from stage IV Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. I was a sick puppy. After catastrophic chemo, two respiratory crises, a stem cell transplant and one cardiac arrest, God has restored me to FULL health. Doctors say I'm disease FREE! Last week, the doctor told me, "Medicine didn't bring you through this." I know—and you know—God did!"

Sunday, August 4, 2013

John Martin's Horrifying Tale

by John > Joe > Keith

John Martin
Taken December, 2009
John has been Rockport 35RV Park's resident Artist in Wood for several years now. His motorhome and studio is right inside the gate. If you've stopped by to visit him while he's working, you know that he has a gentle voice and is a great conversationalist.

What you probably don't know is that we all came very close to already having had our last conversation with John! Yes, it's that scary. But, so far at least, it has a good ending.

I'm not sure of the date, but this saga began some days ago, possibly a week or so ago now. John didn't feel well, so crawled back in bed. (That's always a good idea when one doesn't feel well, isn't it?)

He fell asleep. When he woke up, it was dark out. He got up.

He fell, and we now know broke at least four bones in his foot. You're probably aware that John already has problems walking and getting around, due to leg problems.

He couldn't get up! He tried everything. He tried pulling himself up by the oven-door handle. It broke. He was still on the floor.

And laid there for something like four or five days, drifting in and out of sleep or consciousness.

John was receiving therapy and of course missed some sessions. A thoughtful therapy provider couldn't contact him so called the Park office. Allison contacted the ambulance, 911, ---someone--- and they quickly learned that John's motorhome was locked. Reluctantly, they broke a window, opened the door, and found John, still lying on the floor. Alive!

He was taken to the hospital in Port Aransas where he learned the extent of his injuries and is recovering. He'd recovered enough to call Joe late in the week and relate this story. Shortly, he'll be moved to Corpus Christi, where he'll receive some weeks of treatment for a bone infection in his leg.

If you'd care to help John pass the hours, his phone number is 402 560-4949. I bet he'd be glad to hear that you are glad that there was a care giver who cared enough to track him down and Allison who came to his rescue.

John's a great artist and a great person. Get well soon, John!


Thursday, August 1, 2013

Short Summary of Our "Trip of a Lifetime"

by Keith

Pat and I left Cedar Rapids July 24 and returned about midnight on the 31st on a "half a cruise" to Alaska. (We flew up, cruised back.) It'll take some time to get pictures selected and modified and to write interesting stories about each. Therefore, just to get something on here and to let you know we're back, I'll post some facts.

Re-entering the US from Canada, near Skagway, Alaska

  1. Airport with the most customer-friendly wi-fi: Cedar Rapids (FREE and no "I AGREE")
  2. Airport with the most un-customer-friendly wi-fi: Chicago's O'Hare (Not free and hoops to jump through.)
  3. Missed the most: music! (I didn't have any loaded on my tablet and there wasn't a music channel on the ship; surprising.)
  4. Missed the least: going to the gym! (I try to go three times each week. The easiest thing in the world would be to not go! But don't they have a gym on the ship? Of course they do! But I was on vacation and I was not going to ruin it by going to the gym!)
  5. Most interesting: the glaciers, I think. It was all new to us so nothing stood out way above everything else.
  6. Biggest surprise: learning about the Klondike gold rush in the late 1800s.  I did not know that the seekers had to walk 47 miles to get to the river. And they had to carry 2000 pounds of supplies while doing it. Thousands of horses lost their lives during the trek. I'm sure lots of people did, too.
  7. Also interesting: seeing and learning about the Alyeska pipeline and panning for gold at Dredge #8.
  8. Worst day: without doubt, the last day, after we arrived at the airport in Vancouver. Ever felt like you were cattle? We did, at the airport in Vancouver. The line was about two hours long.
  9. Most disgusting: seeing our two little cans of salmon thrown in the waste basket because they contained 184 grams instead of only 100 grams! (I could have put them in our checked (25$!) suitcase and there would have been no problem. But of course I don't think like the government or a terrorist so didn't even think of it.
  10. Interesting facts: Apparently, in the US only people under 65 are permitted to make shoe bombs, as people older are not required to remove their shoes. In Canada, terrorists can be any age.
  11. Pat's most significant souvenir: a really bad cold.
  12. Keith's worst souvenir: a really bad cold, which I shared with Pat.
It had been over 14 years since I flew on an airliner. If it is another 14 years before I do it again, it will be just fine with me. TSA rules and airline charges have sucked every bit of fun out of travelling on the airlines.