…By Judah Olanisebee for TDPel Media.
A Father’s Tragic Diagnosis
A young father from Brisbane, Chris Stoker, received a devastating blow when he was diagnosed with an incurable form of cancer shortly before his wife gave birth to their first daughter.
In May 2022, Chris was diagnosed with ocular melanoma, a rare and deadly eye cancer.
The rarity of this cancer is evident as only five to six in one million people are diagnosed with it.
Within days of the diagnosis, Chris had to undergo surgery to remove his affected eye and replace it with a prosthetic.
Spreading to the Liver, Limited Treatment Options
Unfortunately, Chris’s journey took a turn for the worse when a routine scan in March revealed that the cancer had spread to his liver.
The news was devastating for Chris and his wife, Katey MacPherson, who were informed that there is no cure for this type of cancer, and treatment options are limited.
The available treatments may prolong Chris’s life, but they cannot cure him of this terrible disease.
At just 36 years old, Chris was given a prognosis of only months to live instead of years.
A Family’s Hope Amidst Uncertainty
Despite the heartbreaking circumstances, Chris and Katey welcomed their daughter, Ivy Elizabeth Rose, in April.
In a heartfelt Facebook post, Katey expressed her fears about the future but emphasized their determination to fight the disease and cherish the time they have together as a family.
They want to create beautiful memories with their little girl and raise awareness about this type of cancer.
Rallying Support for Treatment
To explore treatment options beyond what is currently available, Chris’s aunt, Gillian Tobler, started a GoFundMe page to raise funds for a combination drug treatment.
Doctors have expressed optimism about the potential of Darovasertib and Crizotinib to prolong Chris’s life, if not overcome the cancer.
The estimated cost of three rounds of this treatment is $25,000, a significant financial burden for the couple.
However, the community has shown incredible support, with the fundraiser surpassing the halfway mark in donations.
Raising Awareness and Seeking Treatment
Chris and Katey are determined to raise awareness about ocular melanoma and its impact.
Chris initially experienced blurry vision, a known symptom of the disease, but, like many men, he tried to dismiss it.
Only after persistent urging from his wife did he seek medical attention.
Unfortunately, the diagnosis revealed a large mass behind his eye, leading to the ocular melanoma diagnosis.
With the tumor growing too large for radiation treatment, Chris will undergo a combination of chemotherapy and immunotherapy.
A Community United in Hope
The Stoker family’s journey has touched the hearts of many, inspiring support and generosity from their community.
As they navigate the challenges ahead, they remain grateful for the love and support they have received.
While the road ahead may be difficult, they are determined to fight the cancer and cherish the precious moments they have together.
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