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Posted - 12/01/2018 :  9:57:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Evening guys,

Just wanted to stop in after a long absence and let you know about the journey I've been on.

On June 26, 2017 I had my annual check-up. The doc walked in the room and said we have a problem. My liver enzymes were highly elevated. I had lost about 15lbs in the last two weeks and wasn't feeling to well.

After two weeks of non stop tests, a biopsy was taken and a stent put in one of the ducts in my pancreas. It showed I had cancer on the head of my pancreas.

I was sent to an oncologist and a treatment schedule was planned. First thing was my surgeon implanted a port in my chest and I began chemo in early August. Damn near killed me. Over 12 weeks I lost over 100lbs, had bouts of dehydration and couldn't hold in any food. Can't remember how many times I got out of bed and passed out on the floor.

Had a PET scan in late October which showed the tumor had shrunk and was no longer well defined. On Oct. 8th I had Whipple surgery and they totally re-plumbed my insides. Was in surgery for a little over 8 hours. Doc told me everything went fine, but he also said it might come back...only worse.

After about a month after surgery, I was finally able to eat again. Another month and I spent another Christmas with the family. Progress was slow, but I felt pretty good. I knew I would never be the same, but some small weigh gains brought some hope. But I also developed a inguinal hernia which is quite common after this type of surgery.

On June 23, 2018 I had a another checkup and it didn't go well. I just didn't feel right and a blood test provided the reason. My tumor marker went from 0 to 120. Normal is 0 - 35. A week later it was 115. A PET scan showed the cancer had returned and it was worse. It was into a couple of lympth nodes and my pancreas lit up. A week later and my marker was 398.

Had a meeting with the doc and he literally gave me a terminal diagnosis. Not what I wanted to hear, but I wasn't about to give up. No way.

My wife and I had the talk and we chose another round of chemo. We both knew what was coming, but damn if we would just let it take it's toll.

The medication cocktail was changed and I had 6 chemo sessions over 8 weeks. Then it would be another PET scan and blood test.

It wasn't easy again. Lost another 27lbs, all my body hair and a lot of muscle mass. But I felt better.

My meeting with the doc after the PET scan had me scared to say the least. He walked into the office and sat down and just looked at me and shook his head with a big smile on his face. The scan showed no signs of cancer and my marker was down to 34. He never imagined my scan would come out this way.

The plan was another blood test in a week and the marker went down to 33. The cancer was gone,
so the plan was to stop the chemo for now to let me heal and get feeling better, then wait another month for the blood test.

Well, I go in this Tuesday for the test. I've gained 8lbs and feel a little stronger. So, hopefully it hasn't come back...yet. I'll know on Friday.

Another Christmas with the family is my wish. Hope it comes true.

For now...I feel like building something. Have to see what's on the shelf Anyone have some Jordan kits for sale?
In memory of Mike Chambers

Country: USA | Posts: 2972

David J Buchholz
Crew Chief

Posted - 12/01/2018 :  10:17:59 PM  Show Profile  Send David J Buchholz an AOL message  Reply with Quote
Theoretically, we aren't supposed to bring up religion on the forum, but as a point of order, I'll be keeping you and your family in my prayers.


Home of the North Coast Railroad.

Edited by - David J Buchholz on 12/02/2018 10:42:56 PM

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Neil M

Premium Member

Posted - 12/01/2018 :  10:21:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Great news Marken! Well done on keeping fighting and keeping your head above water. Best wishes for christmas and the future

Built a waterfront HO layout in Ireland http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=22161 but now making a start in On30 in Australia http://www.railroad-line.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=52273

Country: Australia | Posts: 2501 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 12/01/2018 :  11:22:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You will be in my prayers Marken. God bless you.


"And in the end, itís not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." A. Lincoln

Country: USA | Posts: 11841 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 12/02/2018 :  01:19:37 AM  Show Profile  Send mark_dalrymple an AOL message  Reply with Quote
Fingers crossed Marken.

I hope one kit turns into 100!

Cheers, Mark.

Country: New Zealand | Posts: 1109 Go to Top of Page

Crew Chief

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  02:11:15 AM  Show Profile  Visit spyder62's Homepage  Reply with Quote
great news,just keep fighting and you will win.No Jordons but if you want a kit let me know

In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame,
two is a law firm and three or more is a congress.
--John Adams

Country: USA | Posts: 640 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  06:20:12 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Congratulations on beating it.
Sending positive thoughts your way to spend this Christmas with your family and many more too.

Country: USA | Posts: 23100 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  06:46:45 AM  Show Profile  Visit slimrails's Homepage  Reply with Quote
You certainly looked it straight in the eye and didn't back down, Marken. Your inner strenth is an inspiration and I wish you all of the best in your recovery.

Country: USA | Posts: 8406 Go to Top of Page

Tyson Rayles

Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  07:45:23 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Congrats Marken on your progress and I hope it stays gone!

Country: USA | Posts: 12986 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 12/02/2018 :  08:29:13 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bernd's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Great to hear a success story. Keep going strong.


Country: USA | Posts: 3380 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  08:38:37 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

Bonnie and I will keep you in our prayers. PM me your mailing address and I can take care of that Jordan.

Country: USA | Posts: 31528 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  08:46:52 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Marken, good thoughts coming your way from me. Never give up, never look back, the future is ahead look there.


Country: USA | Posts: 3242 Go to Top of Page

Crew Chief

Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  09:07:24 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Marken this is as they say priceless I will keep you and family in my prayers keep your good faith and power up !!

Have a wonderful Christmas with Family


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Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  09:37:06 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Your incredible ride makes the aches and pains we get seem like nothing. Prayers are with you, and a Jordan thrown in for good measure.

PM sent.


Country: USA | Posts: 4822 Go to Top of Page


Posted - 12/02/2018 :  09:50:38 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Great news of an epic journey. Prayers from Michigan of continued good news and Merry Christmas.

Karl Scribner
Sunfield Twp. Michigan
Kentucky Southern Railway
The Spartan Line

Country: USA | Posts: 10578 Go to Top of Page


Premium Member

Posted - 12/02/2018 :  10:24:47 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Great news! A very effective weight loss technique, but not one that I think you'd recommend :-)

Are you interested in Jordan wagons, or cars?


Modeling 1890s (because the voices in my head told me to)

Country: USA | Posts: 7959 Go to Top of Page
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