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Congratulations to ATO brother Richard Hainkel on becoming a first-time grandfather to close out 2011! Richard’s daughter Aubrey gave birth to Isla Blue Anders (7.5 lbs) on Saturday, December 31, 2011! Aubrey and her husband Grant welcomed their daughter into this world at 5:19 p.m. Richard and his wife Lori can be reached at (512) 423-0026.
For those of you who don’t know what the thymus is (I didn’t!), it’s where T-cells “go to school” to learn how to fend off diseases in your pre-adolescent years. As you mature and reach puberty, the thymus breaks down and absorbs itself into your body. It disappears. Except in a very small handful of people. Some bodies don’t break down the thymus while others - for reasons not yet known - develop a thymus again! Yours truly is in the “grew one again” category. (“Damn Vulcan physiology!” - Dr. McCoy, “Star Trek”) Interestingly, there are only about 400 known cases of thymoma in the U.S.
Brothers: first, I want to again thank all of you who have been keeping me and my family in your thoughts and prayers, as well as the positive energy you keep sending our way. It’s helping us during these days of uncertainty. I said I would update everyone following the visit with the oncologist on Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011. Here is what we now know: I have thymoma, a tumor in the thymus. Mine is about 8 cm x 5 cm and located near my aorta.
Brothers: your prayers and positive thoughts worked! The biopsy results came back and I do not have lymphoma! I have thymoma. From what I understand (so far) this is a tumor of the thalmus gland. I am meeting with an oncologist later today to discuss options for its removal. I’m not out of the woods yet but things are looking much more positive! God bless all of you for your prayers, positive thoughts and words of encouragement over the past few weeks! I will update again after I meet with the next doctor. L&R
4 Lost Brothers have been found so far this month! Go to the Lost Brothers page to see who’s still lost.
- Chris Turner Clem - Class of 1995
- Steven R Droddy - Class of 1995
- David Sean Thompson - Class of 1998
- Ben Forrest - Class of 2010
Over the past couple of weeks I have once again experienced our Brotherhood in action firsthand. As many of you may now know, I am scheduled for a biopsy on Tuesday, December 20 at Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas. I have a mass (8cm x 5cm) located near the left side of my heart. The doctors believe it’s lymphoma but the biopsy will confirm or negate that diagnosis. I never thought I’d be facing something like this. Since the initial diagnosis, I have spoken by phone with several of you who have given me the strength and courage to face what’s coming, as well as emails. I appreciate your outpouring of Brotherly love and concern more than you’ll ever know. As soon as I can update everyone on my diagnosis, I will do so. In the meantime, I appreciate your prayers and positive thoughts.
Love & respect to my ATO Brothers.
Congratulations are in order for brother Thomas Greg Mayo (SHSU 1987) who was recently named the 2011 Distinguished Educator of the Year - Secondary Teacher by Sam Houston State University’s School of Education. Greg was recognized for “expertise and outstanding service in the classroom, school, district and community, as well as their contributions to the field and society.”
In support of the Sam Houston State University Bearkat football program, the City of Huntsville will light the Sam Houston statue in orange for tomorrow night’s playoff game. According to City of Huntsville Community Services Director Matt Lumpkins, the statue will remain orange as long as the Bearkats are in the playoffs. “Using orange lenses over the spotlights we have on the Sam Houston statue, the City will turn Sam orange for the playoff game,” Lumpkins said.