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Fundraising Efforts for Amy Miller

by Amy Wenger on August 2, 2014
 


There is a captivating picture circulating around social media as of late, one that should be of interest to many folks in the Bremen area and places surrounding.

It's a lovely photograph of a mother and her daughter, and at first glance, it seems so much like many other precious images that give reason to pause and admire the simple beauty of the moment.  In this particular glimpse, the face of Amy Miller shown at right, while sweetly nuzzling her mama's shoulder is Miller's youngest daughter, Hanna.

    What makes the moment so atypically poignant is that Miller wears a smile that almost completely belies the fact that she is fighting the ultimate battle for her life, one in which her family and her community hopes and prays will grant her many more long, healthy, remarkable years.

    Miller is currently receiving chemotherapy to shrink a series of tumors that were recently discovered, three of which were located in her head with an additional one in her sacrum, which is the base of the spinal column.  The masses were diagnosed as Stage 4 Lymphoma, an aggressive type of cancer.

    To help offset the medical costs incurred by the Miller family while she undergoes treatment, there are fund raising efforts in place.  The first is in the form of a garage and bake sale, which will be held on August 7, 8, and 9 at 151 East John Street, just north of U.S. 6 and east of State Road 19 near downtown Nappanee.  The hours will be from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. each of the three days.

    Another means of contributing to the Miller's cause is to click this link.  In doing so, visitors will be directed to an essay describing Miller's ordeal, along with instructions on how to donate.

    The story was written by one of Miller's four daughters, Grace Nyhuis, who explained the onset of her mother's symptoms and how she is faring in the wake of exhausting medical challenges.  Just this past spring, Nyhuis said her mother noticed some bumps on her head, while at the same time experiencing headaches.  Upon consulting her doctor and having biopsies performed on what were initially thought to be cysts, the family was given the shocking news.

    Almost immediately, Nyhuis said, people rallied around the family.  Miller's husband is longtime Bremen resident Keith Miller, and she has two additional daughters, Katie Flores and Laura Unsicker.  "People have been wonderful, they've been bringing her meals," Nyhuis said.  She also expressed gratitude to Miller's employer, T.J. Snuggles, for their compassion in allowing Miller to have the necessary and needed respite to recuperate.  "They're doing a wonderful job and working with her to make sure she gets time off."

    Presently, Miller has had two rounds of chemotherapy, at the strongest level allowable, which means she can only receive doses in three week intervals.  As a result, "the chemo makes her pretty sick," Nyhuis noted, but said otherwise, "she's doing okay."  After the third round of chemotherapy is administered, Miller will be given what is called a PET scan, which stands for positron emission tomography.  This test is one measure of seeing how well the body's functional systems are tolerating the procedures.

    If it is revealed that the tumors have been reduced after the first three chemotherapy sessions, Miller's prognosis will be good, and she will then receive three more rounds of treatment over the following nine weeks.  She is scheduled to have the PET scan sometime in late August.  Nyhuis expressed optimism that her mother's first chemotherapy sessions have been encouraging, adding that the size of the growths appears to be lessening.

    Nyhuis welcomes those who would like to donate items for the garage and bake sale to contact her about the best way to offer items.  She can be reached via telephone at (574) 226-1262 or by e-mail, at mgnyhuis@yahoo.com.
 

    

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