A love story: Mark Menendez’s fight to save his wife from pancreatic cancer

This is how I last saw Donna, back in July at iCast in Las Vegas. She looked great and I remember thinking, if anyone could beat Pancreatic Cancer, Donna could...This is how I last saw Donna, back in July at iCast in Las Vegas. She looked great and I remember thinking, if anyone could beat Pancreatic Cancer, Donna could...
“db, no matter how strong you think you are, how strong I thought I was, you don’t have the strength, the shoulders to bear all of this on your own.”

While Mark has health insurance, the family is still facing mounting medical bills, travel for treatment bills, and just recently, while away on a short vacation to take the children to the beach, the pipes in their Kentucky home FROZE and burst, pretty much flooded the whole house, so on top of everything else, Mark is trying to rebuild the home they live in.

“We have seen firsthand the love of people, they bring us food, help us with getting the children back and forth to school and activities; we have witnessed how sweet, and how kind people really can be.”

Then he says, “When Donna got sick last year, we were facing a 100% loss of income…I couldn’t fish, couldn’t compete, but you know what, every one of my sponsors came through…every sponsor I had came through last year and paid me even though I couldn’t take to the water.”

And they are doing it once again in 2014.  Think this is a cold hearted business, maybe it is, but not at times like these, “Mark you know, I hope you know and if you don’t I’m going to tell you, I’ve had several, dozens of calls about you from Elite anglers, and every one of them basically said the same thing, ‘You tell Mark to never forget that he has 100 brothers out here who will come help him in a minute’s notice.”

And to all of Mark’s sponsors:  Skeeter, Yamaha, Lew's, Strike King, Tackle Warehouse, Seaguar, Lowrance, Linerite, North Star Batteries, Stay N Charge, Outdoor Friends Forever- OFF. Power-Pole…all I can say is this, nice job, class act, and I thank you.

“…you just steal my heart away…”

Comes the Love Story.

“Donna’s legacy will be her children; they are sweet, kind, caring, polite children. She will have raised some great children who will make this world a better place.”

“Donna, my angel, could go fast…”

I know what’s coming, I don’t have to write it down, through the phone I can feel the tears run down Mark’s face.

“…if we do nothing, maybe 8, maybe 12 months.”

I would rather be dead myself than to have to say that sentence about the woman I love, my wife Barb.

If I had to say that sentence, I would, inside, already be gone.

“I have become Donna’s advocate, it is the only thing that helps me keep going, it energizes me that possibly with all my research, all my searching that I turn up one small piece of information that could help.”

And then, “I cannot go through life knowing that I didn’t do everything humanly possible, everything I could do, to help my wife live.”

“I’m so stressed out db, I’ve done everything, but, but…”

And the phone went silent, but for the sobs.

“…just like the sunshine after rain…”