Kayla and Simon Schlabach hope to raise support for their youngest child, Rhett (4), who has been diagnosed with pediatric diffuse high-grade glioma. This is a highly aggressive brain cancer, and …
Kayla and Simon Schlabach hope to raise support for their youngest child, Rhett (4), who has been diagnosed with pediatric diffuse high-grade glioma. This is a highly aggressive brain cancer, and they have been told there is no treatment available. Rhett is one of three children they have, with the others being Miles (6) and Aria (4).
To raise money for medical expenses, food, and time off work while they navigate this difficult time, there is a fundraiser being planned. The fundraiser is being put together by Karsen Jehle (Rhett is her boyfriend’s nephew and she is also a friend of the parents) and it will take place on December 10 (5 p.m.-9 p.m.), at Holy Trinity Parish Life Center, 571 Howard St. Richmond.
“We’re going to have a meal and we’re going to have a live auction, silent auction, and a raffle,” Jehle said about the fundraiser. “There will also be an option for drive-thru for the meal. In case people aren’t wanting to come in for whatever reason. We’ve had an overwhelming amount of donations and support through the community, and I just want to get the word out for everyone to come and support this family.”
It was the beginning of November when Kayla noticed Rhett’s left side of his body was not working as it should. He was taken to the ER and the doctors found a mass on his brain. On November 7, after they removed a portion of the tumor for a pathology test, the results came back, and he was diagnosed with pediatric diffuse high-grade glioma.
“Obviously, a very difficult time, but they continue to be very strong in their faith,” Jehle said about the mindset of Kayla and Simon. “They’re researching constantly, but also trying to spend as much time with Rhett as they can. Kayla has been saying they’re just going to love on Rhett as long as God lets them, but hopefully a miracle happens.”
Two years ago, Kayla and Simon moved to Florida, but most of their family still reside in Kalona. On Kayla’s side of the family there is Kim Gingerich (Mom), Tyler and Kelsie Hebl (sibling), Karson Gingerich (sibling), and Keegan Gingerich (sibling).
On Simon’s side of the family there is Randy Hoyt (Dad), Sheryl Hoyt (Mom), Jenson and Randy Ropp (sibling), Avery and Andrew Schwartz (sibling), Autumn Schlabach (sibling), Josiah and Rosina Hoyt (sibling), Caleb Hoyt (sibling), Elijah Hoyt (sibling), Hannah and Dakota Boyse (sibling), Alex and Kesha Carlson (sibling), and Jesse and Coleen Hoyt (sibling).
One known cause of high-grade gliomas is high doses of radiation, but the reason for most high-grade gliomas in children is not known. Although the outlook is poor, some children can be cured.
“[Rhett] is improving, actually. He’s not able to walk by himself or use his left arm, and the left side of his face is slow, but it’s progressively getting better as we work on it,” Jehle said about Rhett’s current condition.
The donations that have been raised for the family are up to $20,000. Kayla and Simon are thankful for all the support they have been given throughout this difficult time. They hope people stay upbeat when they see them and their children, because they want things to feel as normal as possible for their family.
“[Rhett] is the best kid you’d ever meet,” Jehle said. “He has never done anything wrong. [The Schlabach family] is very strong in their faith and continue to be very strong in their faith during this difficult time. He’s just a very great kid.”
If you have any questions about the Schlabach Family Fundraiser on December 10, contact Karsen Jehle at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to support the Schlabach family by donating, visit givesendgo.com/Schlabachfamily.