A Tribute to Logan Brasic, Osteosarcoma Survivor
Once an avid and talented soccer player, Logan, at age 23 now spends his soccer energies on guest coaching, speaking to groups of children about overcoming challenges, and administering a scholarship to a soccer camp. Once a year he even suits up in his goalie gear and plays goal keeper in the local sarcoma research event, "Soccer Round the Clock." This is painful to his body, but he wants to have the opportunity to experience what he loved and lost, the opportunity to be a soccer player once again, to be in the net, stopping goals and raising money for better treatments for sarcomas...and possibly even a cure.
At age 19, just as Logan's life was unfolding he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in his pelvis. He dropped out of Michigan State University (where he planned to try out for the men's soccer team), moved back home and surrendered his life to the treatment of this disease. Later, after several months of chemo, Logan was faced with the dreadful decision of whether to have the hemipelvic amputation or not. He chose to make a trade: his body for his life. All of a sudden he was on an entirely new life path, a life with a radical amputation. How did he handle this? By pointing out the benefits of having only one leg: "I'll only have to clip 5 toenails; I'll never have to fold my socks again; if I fall, I'll only skin one knee...." Logan lost his left hip, pelvis, and all of the leg below to osteosarcoma - and he remained hopeful for a long and fruitful life. When he awoke from surgery he gave us all a thumbs up, and 24 hours later was learning how to climb stairs.
Logan is now 2.5 years NED. He took a big chance about a year ago and registered with an internet service to meet people in the hopes that he would find a girlfriend. Well, that worked out exceptionally well - he found a great friend, and they are planning to get married in the fall of 2011! He works full time, lives on his own and, like mostly all 23 year olds, calls his mom only sometimes :)
As I look at my son living such an ordinary life, I can't imagine dealing with a recurrence. This cancer is very aggressive and has a high recurrence rate. But if there is a recurrence, I need to know in my heart that I did not waste these years doing nothing. Our family spends considerable time and resources on an annual fundraiser, and 97% of all of the funds raised are used for peer-reviewed sarcoma research. We hope this research will better the lives of countless people who face this disease. I hope this research will save lives. I hope, if Logan experiences a recurrence, that our efforts in fundraising and awareness will ease his journey and give us the common element present in all human challenges...and that is the element of hope. If you ever find yourself on this road, you will know hope is the guidepost that gets us home.
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Copyright © October 2012 Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative.