thru March 2003
Roger Sarver Benefit
Western New York native, Roger Sarver, former employee of the now defunct Ashford Concrete, and bus driver for Springville Griffith Institute has been diagnosed with Adenosquamous carcinoma of the pancreas. According to the American Medical Association (AMA), “Adenosquamous carcinoma of the pancreas is a rare but particularly virulent variant of invasive ductal carcinoma.” In layman terms it refers to a new growth which will invade surrounding tissues, metastasize (spread to other organs) and in Roger’s case will eventually lead to his death.
Roger and his family, wife Darlene, an elementary teacher in the Gowanda school district, and his three children; Daniel, Roxanne and Carrianne are painfully aware of the prognosis. They realize that Roger suffers from the fifth leading cause of cancer death in the United States, with approximately 28,000 Americans dieing from cancer of the pancreas annually. This disease is not only becoming common, it is also exceptionally difficult to treat. Surgical removal ("resection") of the cancer is currently the only chance for a cure for these patients; unfortunately for Roger, this therapy is not an option.
Pancreatic cancer often "strikes" quickly, leaving patients and relatives to deal with sensitive issues they are totally unprepared for. The family must watch their loved one as he heroically faces the pain and tribulations of daily life with the disease. Roger must deal with not only the pain and fatigue but also with the bleak future of leaving his family unattended in a world that is no longer safe and secure.
The family must deal with accepting the loss of a loved one, while attempting to make his time manageable and memorable. They will indeed begin to deal with Caregiver stress, a daily fact of life for far too many caregivers. Caregiving often takes a great deal of time, effort, and work, it is a struggle to balance caregiving with other responsibilities including full-time jobs and caring for children. This Constant stress can lead to "burnout" and health problems for the caregiver, leaving them feeling guilty, frustrated, and angry from time to time.
The burden to Roger and his family also includes the loss of Roger’s financial status. Presently Roger is receiving no disability and his means to receive disability are looking bleak. The stress of a terminal disease has already engulfed this family of normally active, civic minded individuals.
Roger has left his mark of friendship on many. Students will recall their bus driver; many will recall the Over the Road Truck Driver that made them smile. The former manager of Dinah’s Family Restaurant in Springville is an active member of the Springville Field and Stream Club, Western New York Trap League and the Assembly of God Church in Springville. Roger loves to hunt and fish, but most of all he loves the quality time he has with his family, a time that has ungraciously been cut short.
Roger and his family have always been active in assisting others in their community. Now, friends, neighbors and acquaintances are gathering to give back to Roger and his family some of what this family has, over the years, offered to the community. While this group cannot extend the life of Roger, nor assist with the emotional stress of Roger’s prognosis, they can assist in alleviating the financial burden of Roger’s illness.