Some of you are already familiar with Mike and Cherie Gilbert and their wonderful daughter, Nikki. The story of her brain cancer is one we've been following at Annarella Home for the past year and a half. Diagnosed with a rare type of brain tumor called Pleomorphic Xanthoastrocytoma (PXA) on her brain stem and going thru her midbrain into her thalamus, Nikki remains in good spirits despite the rigors of chemo-therapy. The tumor continues to grow leaving Nikki with lessening balance and mobility. But we never see Nikki without her bright smile as she tootles around on her scooter. She remains sweet-tempered and interested in all things teen like shopping for clothes, spending hours on the phone, and being with her friends.
When you hear stories like this, of what some families are facing, there is always the question of what can I do to ease their burden. One of the biggest worries for families involved with catastrophic illnesses is financial. There are always gaps in insurance coverage, and the families run up huge personal bills for hospital stays, eating out, extra gas, etc. Since Nikki's doctors are in Dallas, Cherie and Mike have made many trips up and down I35. They have had to cut down on work, but they will do whatever they must to see that Nikki gets the best care available.
Over the past years there have been several fundraisers held to help defray medical and other incidental costs. This Fall's major fundraiser is Gooberfest. On September 6 a charity motorcycle ride will start from Hog Alley in Georgetown, TX and conclude at Walburg Restaurant in Walburg, TX. Check out the Gooberfest website for all the details. This will be great fun. If you can't make the ride but would like to contribute donations can be made to the Nikki Gilbert Benefit Fund at First Texas Bank, 900 S Austin Ave, Georgetown, TX 78626.
Keep Nikki and her family in your thoughts and prayers.