JAMESTOWN – A staple of the Jamestown High School Community, best known for his “ruler suspenders” over his 42 years as a custodian with the school, is seeking donations to help with end of life care following a terminal cancer diagnosis.
Andy Field is seeking hospice care for his terminal brain cancer. Penny Field, Andy’s wife, says that after falling and hitting his head while camping, Andy seemed to be ‘okay’ after being checked out by an EMT friend. However, the next day, Andy’s family noticed signs of what they believed to be a stroke.
“So they called the ambulance right away and took him to WCA, and that’s where they found that he had a brain tumor that was bleeding,” says Penny Field.
Andy had surgery just a few days later to remove the tumor, however, the glioblastoma is still fatal. After receiving six week of chemo and radiation therapies, Andy has decided to seek hospice care to enjoy the time he has left with his family.
“Andy’s getting on it early, where most people wait until it’s the last few weeks of life, but that’s not what hospice is. You can be on it for a long time,” says Penny.
“They’re there to help you go through life until life, it’s over with,” says Andy.
After March 17th, Andy will be out of sick time and vacation days, and will be forced to retire since his body can no longer handle the physical work. Once retired, he will have to pay out of pocket for his current health insurance, a bill around $1500 monthly.
The Fields are asking the community to help raise money to pay for the insurance, other medical costs, as well as funds to fix up their trailer so Andy can spend his time doing what he loves, camping.
“The doctor’s said, usually stopping treatments, usually it would be two to four months. We’re hoping for longer, I mean we really want to see him be a lot longer and prove them wrong. But we don’t know,” admits Penny.
“The campground was the bigger place that he likes to go, as far as I know they’ve been down there the past decade,” continues Douglas Lawson, Andy’s step-son. “Nine years, and everyone’s like a big family.”
To spend time at Top-A-Rise campground, the family’s camper will need repairs to make it safe for Andy. This will include reinforcing the camper floor, reinforcing the deck floor, and providing a better cover for the deck so Andy can spend more time outside with his family and friends.
“Everyone’s having a hard time with it, but we’re all pulling together, and that’s the main thing,” says Penny. “If I called up his brother, they would be here in an instant. All of my kids have been just wonderful about being around to help if I need it. Our extended family at camp, which is all of our friends. Even the school, the High School. This last week he’s gotten tons of cards in the mail just to say ‘hi’ and ‘how are you doing.’”
To donate, visit his GoFundMe page linked here.