Nicholas was an extremely active, hilarious, healthy young man. He was full of energy and life. He loved fishing, playing basketball, going to Six Flags Great America, and hanging out with friends and family. Nicholas dreamed of becoming a police officer when he grew up.
The first week of his senior year of high school, in 2014, he developed a limp. He wasn’t in any pain, so we didn’t think much of it. The limp didn’t go away though, and then his hand was numb too. Our family doctor ordered an MRI and found a mass in his brain. A brain biopsy on December 8 showed that the tumor was aggressive, incurable, and inoperable, either grade 3 or 4. Even so, his doctors were optimistic, since he was healthy and young, and there were new treatments just around the corner.
Over the next year, Nicholas went through radiation, chemotherapy, MRIs, hospital stays, physical therapy, and was on so many medications. Through it all, he maintained his incredible attitude, sense of humor, and strong faith in God. He inspired us all immensely. Then, in the spring/summer of 2015, Nicholas’ speech and physical mobility became increasingly difficult. We would see short glimpses of improvement, followed by several declines. In October of 2015, the tumor was growing and spreading uncontrollably, leading to the difficult decision to go on Hospice care. On December 6, 2015, Nicholas passed away peacefully in our home, at only 19 years old.
Our family has found so much healing in participating in different events in Nicholas’ name. One of these special events is the Madison Brain Tumor 5k. This race has made us realize that we are not alone, and it gives us hope to know that we are helping to work towards a cure. Our hope and prayer is that no family would ever have to say goodbye to a loved one, as we did, because of brain cancer.