#TeamSam – Finding the Solution with Team Challenge
On March 5th, 2015 our oldest son, Sam (11 years old), was diagnosed with severe Crohn’s Disease (an autoimmune disease). He had been ill for nearly 3 months and lost an incredible amount of weight. We made several visits to our pediatrician looking for answers. After being poked and prodded, braving many blood tests, an endoscopy, a colonoscopy and a MRI, we finally received his diagnosis.
Watching your child struggle with normal activities, suffer extreme fatigue, lose an incredible amount of weight and endure excruciating abdominal pain and cramping after using the bathroom crushes you as a parent. We want to be able to fix or take away that pain from him in any way possible. But the fact of the matter is there isn’t one solution today to cure this disease. Then while reading up on Crohn’s we learned that there are treatments out there that can help him and hopefully put him in remission so he can enjoy what 11 year old boys should enjoy – LIFE to its fullest potential.
Burning River 100 Mile
This year I’m dedicating all of my training hours/miles and targeted race (Burning River Endurance 100) to our son and all of those that live with this disease. My goal is to raise as much money* as I can by July 25, 2015 (race day) to help fund the much needed research to find the REAL solution. The money we do raise will all go towards the Team Challenge for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. To learn more about this incredible foundation checkout www.ccfa.org
To make a donation for our fund raiser CLICK HERE to access the site.
As of Today
We are in the early stages of working with some amazing doctors in the Kalamazoo area and are scheduled to begin Remicade infusion therapy. While we are thankful that we have an action plan we also know that with these treatments there are side effects and risks. We pray each day that God will watch over Sam and give him the strength as he begins down this new path in life living with a chronic autoimmune disease with no cure.
Thank you in advance for your donation and support.
-Scott & Susan VanLoo
*The money we raise through this fundraiser has no connection to my Burning River 100 entry fee. This fee has already been paid for out of our own pocket.
About Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis
Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis are both major categories of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD). IBD affects an estimated 1.6 million Americans. These chronic diseases tend to run in families and they affect males and females equally. Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal tract and may affect any part from the mouth to the anus. Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory condition limited to the colon, otherwise known as the large intestine.
The Mission of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America is: To cure and prevent Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis through research and to improve the quality of life of children and adults affected by these digestive diseases through education and support.