Loomis shows its caring side
“In three seconds our life as we knew it ended,” said Jan Reynoso.
The Reynoso family’s lives were turned upside down when Jan’s husband, Rick, was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor two months ago.
Now, Rick fights a courageous battle and the family is overwhelmed with the tremendous outreach and support they’ve received from the community.
“I’m just amazed,” Jan Reynoso said.
In January, Rick experienced numbness in the fingers of his left hand. His doctor said it was a problem with his neck and the couple left on a planned vacation to Mexico. By the time they returned, Rick was stumbling.
Rick was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a malignant brain tumor, stage IV. He underwent a six-hour surgery and is now receiving radiation and chemotherapy. He has been left with paralysis on his left side.
Jan said the support they’ve received from locals has been “amazing.”
The Loomis family’s son, Jack, was a starter for the Del Oro High School football team and received a full scholarship to play at the University of Nevada, Reno. He began his freshman year this spring.
“It’s hard on the kids. Jack wants to come home. But he’s doing what he’s supposed to be doing – going to school and playing football,” she said.
According to Jan, their daughter, Kelsey, 16, a Del Oro junior, has received “wonderful” support from the school’s students, teachers and staff.
Recently, dozens of members of the Del Oro football teams showed up at the Reynoso home to help with the yardwork. They mowed, weed-whacked, chopped wood and cleaned up.
Del Oro junior Tyler Alexander, 17, was one of the helpers. He said the reason they were there was because Jack had played football and they were trying to help the family as much as they could.
“Once you’re a part of the Del Oro football family, you always are,” Tyler said.
Junior Nick Zieour, 16, another football player, said the team tries to help the community whenever they can.
Kelsey Reynoso said she appreciated the help. She said that it can be difficult, but she’s “trying to stay strong.”
“It’s really sweet and helps us out a lot,” she said of the assistance.
Jan said that numerous community members have come to their aid. She displayed a “prayer quilt” made by Bobbie Henley, who was Jack’s fifth-grade teacher.
She explained that Robert Thomas, whose son played football with Jack, showed up at their home and built a wheelchair ramp and installed grip bars for Rick. Thomas plans to return to the home to outfit the bathroom for Rick’s use.
“He’s been an angel for us,” Jan said.
Jan said that Rick’s co-workers at Caltrans, where he is an investigator, have donated their vacation time to help with his medical leave.
When asked if there was anything she needed, Jan said she could use assistance for Rick’s personal care so that she could have some respite time to attend their daughter’s school functions.
Jan attributes the support they’ve received to living in a small town like Loomis. The Reynoso family hopes that Rick will be well enough in September to attend his son’s college football games.
“We’re taking it one-day-at-a-time. We just enjoy every second,” Jan said.
Who is at risk?
Glioblastoma multiforme is the most common and malignant form of brain cancers
Average age of diagnosis: 55
Slightly more common in males
Occurrence: 12.8 per 100,000 people
Most common ages: 3 to 12 and 40 to 70
Cause: unknown, no proven genetic link
Source: Mayo Clinic Web site