This is my momma, Karen.
Before I tell you how she passed, I'd like to tell you how she lived. My mom was a passionate lover of life. She loved all living things; from the tiniest of animals, to the beautiful flowers she grew in her garden, and her children, grandchildren, husband and family. She and Dad met in highschool, got married on October 15th 1968, and started the family that she would dedicate her life to. We were the loves of her life, and she was ours.
Mom was stricken with the shingles in July 2012. As she was recovering from that episode, she was experiencing difficulty eating. Weight loss followed, but these were explained away by the recovery from the shingles. As these difficulties worsened, Mom was finally urged by her family to seek an endoscopy suspecting a possible ulcer. The doctor found a mass at the gastro-esophageal junction. This turned out to be stage 4 cancer, diagnosed January 7, 2013. Mom immediately began treatment at the nationally recognized Seattle Cancer Care Alliance/UW Medical. After placement of a stent so Mom could eat again, treatment via chemotherapy went very well for a while, then slowly stopped working. This lead to mom passing away peacefully in her home at the age of 62 on January 30th, 2014.
What I would like others to know is that mom was a healthy person, totally outside of any typical statistic of stomach cancer. Yet, this awful disease left it's mark on us all. Please know that difficulty with heart burn, difficulty swallowing, difficulty keeping food down as usual, and inexplicable weight loss are all reasons to get checked by a doctor immediately. Our prayers to all the families whom are affected by this disease.