Charity Begins At Home
I am fortunate to be a founder of this awesome Journey, which began in May of 2009. At that time, my oldest brother Melton (nicknamed Tank) had already endured 8 months of cancer treatment after being diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. He seemed to be doing well at the time. He was undergoing chemo at Scott & White Hospital in Temple Texas where he first was diagnosed. Early on, my mom would transport Tank the 3-plus hours from her house in Spring TX to Temple every other week. Mom tirelessly accompanied Tank to Temple, leaving before the chickens got up in order to make an 8am appointment, and then returning late, late, late in the day.
Having not made any of the trips myself, I had no idea what strain that placed on my brother and my dear mother. To this day, I don’t believe that I have thanked my Mom enough for what SHE went through. It wasn’t until my brother took a turn for the worse that Mom made it clear to us that she truly missed the simple comforts like a bed to relax in as she waited hours and hours during Tank’s treatment. Also, having a gift card to a TGI Fridays or something would have motivated her to leave the hospital food behind and go out and grab her and Tank a burger and fries.
Well, before her next journey to Temple, mom was equipped with a hotel reservation at the Courtyard hotel connected to the hospital courtesy of my Marriott Rewards account, and several food gift cards, courtesy of the gift card rack at Walgreens. By providing my mom with these simple comforts, her motherly instincts were left to be directed just where they were needed. To Tank! It sucks that it took nearly 4 months before I made it happen. My brother went to be with our Lord on June 22, 2009.
I am thankful that on June 15th, I sat by my brothers side on his bed, and holding him in my arms I softly whispered…Thank You Brother for inspiring me to do something to help countless others on their cancer journey. I promised him that something good has, and will continue to come from his diligent fight. Friday Harbour. And for a brief, yet moment of a lifetime, Tank raised his tired body, looked me in the eye, smiled his big-toothed smile and said Thank You Brother. Our Journey continues.
Marvin & Dana Brixey’s Story
We are Marvin and Dana Brixey and our lives together began just a few short years ago.
Marvin married his college sweetheart and love of his life, and together they raised three beautiful daughters. I, too, married during my college years and the Lord blessed us with a son and two daughters.
After more than 30 years of marriage, Marvin lost his precious wife to pancreatic cancer. After 30 years of marriage, I too, lost my spouse.
After we each worked through our grief individually, the Lord allowed our paths to cross. We began a dating relationship that lasted two years. We found that we enjoyed doing the same things, we had the same principles and values, and we loved being in each other’s company. In short, we fell in love.
And so, with the blessing of all of our children, we were married in November 2009. From the start, our life together was absolutely wonderful. Every day was joyful because we were together and we delighted in loving and serving each other. We found a happiness that we never expected to have again.
After only 14 months of our lives together, Marvin was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma. We were in shock and felt like our world was about to be destroyed. We immediately began to pray, research, and seek counsel for Marvin’s treatment. Our physician in Oklahoma who discovered Marvin’s problem was instrumental in getting us an appointment at MD Anderson very quickly.
From the beginning, we acknowledged and recognized that we were about to begin a journey that was beyond our ability to control. We knew we were completely dependent upon the Lord’s guidance and direction. We have prayed continually that He would open the doors that He would have us go through and firmly close the ones that we should not.
What a lesson in faith He is working in our lives! We have seen His hand at work all along our journey so far. He allowed us to get an appointment at MD Anderson within two weeks of being diagnosed. He allowed us to be picked for a clinical study that has proven to be highly successful. He allowed our insurance to be approved for in-network status, when it wasn’t.
And, He allowed us to be connected with the great organization of Friday Harbour. Friday Harbour has not only helped cover our lodging expenses, they have truly ministered to us through their encouragement and support.
Every time I contact Friday Harbour, they do more than just meet our physical needs. They let us know that there is a large group of people in Houston pulling for us, praying for us, and wishing us a complete recovery. They call to check on us and they never fail to tell us to let them know when we have to come back. What a huge relief and encouragement it is to know that we are not in this battle alone. They offer aid in a tangible way, which so greatly helps in taking some of the pressure off during this intense and stressful time.
I can’t say how very much we appreciate Friday Harbour and all the help they have been to us through this difficult time. Friday Harbour is truly a blessing!
Judy & Dan Davis Story
I’d love to give a testimonial on the help we received from Friday Harbour:
My husband has been treated since early November 2010 for lung cancer at Md Anderson in Houston. Treatment ended for now in mid February 2011. Living 5 hours away, it was necessary to spend 4 to 5 nights a week, for 3 1/2 months, in hotels. After a few weeks we were struggling financially, paying for gas, food, hotels, medicene, etc. We heard of Friday Harbour toward the end of treatments.
Immediately after I contacted them, they responded. We were blessed with several nights stay at the Holiday Inn at no cost to us, and had a very comfortable, clean room. Thank you Friday Harbour! Your kind help is very much appreciated. I look forward to contacting you again when we return for follow up appointments.
Dan and Judy Davis
Corpus Christi, Texas