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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

(September 13, 2007)

E-mail excerpts from Rocco's Mommy

The test results are very encouraging. Rocco no longer has neuroblastoma cells in his lungs. The mass near the adrenal gland has considerably shrunk and shifted closer to some lymph nodes adjacent to the aorta. No more chemo will be administered, and the broviac ports will be removed from his chest and leg. YIPEE!
Surgeons will be consulted about whether removal of this small mass is feasible/worth the risks. The risk, because of where the cells are is great, and the benefits lacking. Many children have had this same residual "mature tissue" and live many, many happy years.
Beginning soon he will be checked every month and monitored closely since he has been declared "in remission". We feel relieved and grateful knowing that Rocco will be around for a while, free to live a happy life with all of us.
Your support and friendship through this whole ordeal has been essential to our
sanity and our faith in the best possible outcome for our precious son. I invite you to celebrate with us, and I celebrate our evolving relationship with friends and family like YOU. Thanks for your prayers, thoughts and support.

Peace & LOVE,
WANDA


The latest on Rocco .. from his mom! (9-04-07)

Dear Family & Friends,

I hope this finds you happy and healthy. Rocco is such a character! As his personality develops, we see a glimpse of the special human being he is becoming. He says Dada and Mama, and tries to taste everything on our plates. He is happy go lucky and adapts well to any circumstance. What a trooper. He's climbing on everything so we have to watch him every second. He's very daring and strongly asserts his independence. On the flip side, he is quite the snugler. Such cuteness is unbearably wonderful.

He has had his 8th cycle of chemo, and what we hope will be his last. Now that his counts have gone up sufficiently, he will begin "final evaluation" tomorrow (9/5). This entails bone marrow aspiration, MIBG Scan, CT Scan, Catecholomines, urine test, echo cardiogram, and hearing test. We're hoping they will find that the cancer is all "gone" so our little man will be in remission. If he is indeed found to be in remission, we will then set a date to surgically remove the "broviac" (permanent port) on his chest. After that we will be checking routinely to be sure he remains in remission.



So, please keep the positive energy flowing our way. Thanks for your affection, prayers and support.

Peace & love,
Wanda



Update on Rocco from Rocco's mother, Wanda:
July, 2007


Hey All,

Hope all is well with you. The summer is zipping by, and Rocco is about to turn 1 year old on Friday. What a tough but wonderful year it's been! He had a blood transfusion last Friday which perked him right up. His counts are on their way up now, as we approach the 8th, and hopefully last cycle. On his birthday we go for bloodwork. I'm planning on bringing cupcakes and apple juice for all the nurses, doctors and staff who have been wonderful to him these last 6 months. We hope they say he's "on" for chemo the 17th. Damien is taking the day off and we'll have a beautiful family day. After the supposedly last treatment and his counts go up, they will do a bone marrow aspiration and the body scans again, for a "final"evaluation. Depending on their findings they'll decide how to proceed. Keep your fingers crossed. Thanks for your prayers and the positive energy you've sent our way. We are grateful for your support. Here are a few recent pictures.

Peace and love,
Wanda


June 26, 2007:
Dear Family & Friends,
I hope this finds you enjoying the summer. We are on track for cycle 6 (of 8) of chemo this Friday, June 29th. Rocco's preliminary blood work indicates this cycle will not be delayed as the last two have for a needed transfusion.

We are happy because recent evals show that he no longer has cancer in his bone marrow or liver. He has some left in his lung, and the main tumor in the adrenal gland has shrunk considerably. I haven't written an update in a while because I just had a case taken off my right wrist. I still have some tingling and numbness (which will eventually get better with massage & therapy).


Rocco is so much fun, and he's getting stronger and smarter every day. He's scooting around really fast using only his elbows, hands and tips of toes. He's babbling constantly and laughing and giggling like crazy.

He's still weighing the same old 16.4 to 16.13 pounds, he's been weighing since the beginning, but he's grown an inch. He's been eating well. I make home made stuff with organic meat/chicken & veggies, and he has his favorite baby foods also.

He has two teeth coming out in the middle of his bottom gum, and he sometimes smiles with a funny wrinkling of his nose. Oh so cute!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I can't believe he'll be 1 year old in a little bit over month. What an adventurous and challenging year it's been!!! We appreciate the PRAYERS, LOVE and support you've provided, and we love you right back. Peace,W."

May 30, 2007: Dear Family & Friends,
After two long weeks of being in the hospital and doing tests (bone marrow aspiration, MIBG Scan, CT Scan, Urine test, Hearing test & Bloodwork), Rocco tested negative for cancer in the bone marrow, they saw no lesions in the liver, the mass in the lungs is a tiny speck now, and the main tumor in the adrenal gland has shrunk considerably.

His hearing thus far has not been affected by the chemo. He had a platelet and a blood transfusion on Friday because his counts were very low.

Next Friday (June 1) he gets bloodwork again and, if all goes well, he starts the 1st of four more cycles of chemo.

Needless to say, we are VERY HAPPY and GRATEFUL to know that the chemo has helped him get better. THANKS for all the prayers, and the LOVE.
Peace always,
Wanda

----------------------- previous post --------------

Monday, April 16, 2007

6 month old Rocco, needs your prayers

Gateway supporter Carol requests prayer for her nephew,
Rocco
( 6 months old) suffering from a rare 'baby cancer'.

He is in extreme pain. He has started his chemo treatment
at Columbia Presbyterian Children's Hospital.

Please pray for this little baby and his parents,
Damien
and Wanda.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Gateway supporter John MacIver writes:


"Dear Friends,

My dear friend Mark's brother has had an accident. An electrical panel he was working on exploded in his face. He has massive burns. Please pray for his healing as well as that of his family. This is not one I'm going to be able to give you much further information about as there is limited access to information. Family issues, you understand.

Also my dad is doing much better so thank you for your prayers.

In His Service, Now and Forever,
John C. Mac Iver"

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Dear friends,


My dad, George T. Gavaris (age 96) is out of surgery (right hip).


He's awake, talking and enjoying dinner!


Praise the Lord!


Sunday, May 20, 2007

PLEASE PRAY FOR DEAN'S DAD



Dean's father, George T. Gavaris, fell and broke his right hip earlier today.

He is in Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow, NY and will be undergoing open reduction internal fixation surgery sometime tomorrow.


Dad is 96 years old, so please pray for a quick recovery and rehabilitation.
Thank you!

Dean with dad last month at Eisenhower Park, East Meadow, LI





Dad, far right, pictured with Dean, Lorena and Jeremy, Lorena's sister Martine, husband Tom and son Ken
(August 2006)

Saturday, May 19, 2007




Saturday June 2nd. at 1:00pm
Gateway's 2nd Golf Classic

Gateway will provide each golfer with..
1) their golf registration fee: around $45 at the Hyatt Hills Golf Complex in Clark, NJ
2) a memorable Gateway Golf shirt
3) refreshments, fellowship & fun
4) an opportunity to enjoy 9-holes and make a difference for Christ






Just a reminder!






Gateway's Annual Walk-for-Life

10am: Saturday June 2, 2007

Warinanco Park, Roselle, NJ

Call us at 973-399-8378 for details

Monday, May 14, 2007










Walk-a-thon /
Golf-a-thon
Saturday June 2, 2007




http://base.google.com/base/a/1623270/D7295156814238549025

*click on the above link for Golf or Walk posters (suitable for printing), sponsor forms, bulletin inserts, out of area sponsorship and much more.

(Thanks to Bill Zicker for his computer help on this!)











Friday, May 4, 2007


Prayer requests from a former volunteer (all names have been changed)

“(I) NEED PRAYER FOR MY DAUGHTER SARAH. SHE LOST CUSTODY OF HER 2 GIRLS 2 MONTHS AGO. SHE HAS STOPPED DRINKING SINCE THAT TIME AND IS TRYING TO GET HER CHILDREN BACK FROM HER X HUSBAND. HE IS AN ALCOHOLIC AS WELL - FUNCTIONING.

HER GIRLS ARE DEVESTATED AND WANT TO BE HOME WITH THEIR MOM. SHE AND HER PRESENT HUSBAND HAVE CUSTODY OF THEIR 2 YEAR OLD SON BOBBIE. HER HUSBAND DOES NOT WANT TO HEAR ABOUT GOD. SHE IS PRAYING EVERYDAY AND CALLS ME A FEW TIMES A DAY.

THIS SITUATION HAS AFFECTED ME EMOTIONALLY AND PHYSICALLY. I KNOW GOD HAS A PLAN BUT ITS HARD WAITING. ALCOHOLISM IS ALL AROUND MY FAMILY. PLEASE PRAY FOR JANICE AND SYDNEY.

MY DAUGHTER REBECCA IS SEEKING OUT CHURCHES TO ATTEND WITH HER SON DAVID. SHE IS IN COLLEGE PART TIME TO BECOME A NURSE. HER JOB JUST TRANSFERED HER TO A LOCATION THAT INVOLVES A LONG TRIP EVERY DAY.

SHE PUTS IN SO MANY HOURS. HER SON ID DEMONSTRATING OUTBURSTS OF ANGER (5 YEARS OLD) HE NEEDS PRAYERS AS WELL. HIS FATHER SMOKES POT ALL DAY LONG. (THEY ARE DIVORCED).”

Tuesday, May 1, 2007


The Truth in Love: Bringing Clarity
to a Confusing Subject



Helpful resources: from Free Indeed Ministries
http://www.freeindeedne.com

Books / Booklets

A Parent's Guide to Preventing Homosexualty - Joseph Nicolosi and Linda Ames Nicolosi

Coming Out of Homosexuality - Bob Davies and Lori Rentzel

Straight Answers - Focus on the Family

Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth - Jeffrey Satinover, M.D.

Someone I Love is Gay - Anita Worthen & Bob Davies

Desires in Conflict - Joe Dallas

Websites

www.exodus.to

www.exodusyouth.to