LeMars, IA USA
U.S. Army Iowa National Guard
Sgt, 113th Cavalry out of LeMars, IA
12/20/2009, Sioux City, IA, USA
Our son left for Iraq Oct. 2005 to serve his country for a year. He was a mechanic. He loved what he did. In March of 2006 he started not feeling well. A month went by before someone realized he needed help. He was sent to Walter Reed in Washington where we were waiting for him. Tests showed he has leukemia. He went through a lot of chemo, but needed a bone marrow transplant. His sister Brooke was a match. We then had to go to Wilford Hall in San Antonio for the transplant. Joe had to stay there for 90 days. But in June of 2007, his leukemia came back. More chemo and then was given Brooke’s stem cells in November 2007. The military medically discharged Joe in 2008. Joe stayed in remission until April 2009, and then it came back again in Oct. 2009. He needed another transplant , but couldn’t use Brooke this time. He had to have one more week of chemo in Dec. 2009 before the transplant was to take place in Omaha , NE. He developed an infection, then started bleeding in his brain. He died December 20, 2009 in Sioux City, IA. As his mother, it was the worst thing I had to do, was to watch my son die. A part of me died with him.
He loved working on cars (especially his 1950 Buick), fishing and being with family and friends. He has 2 sons. Austin 4 , and Alex 1. A wife, Melissa. Has 2 sisters, Amanda and Brooke. Has 1 nephew, 1 niece, and 1 brother in law.
Thank you for your time, and I would love to hear from you. I hope you can do a portrait of my son. It would mean the world to me. You did one of my friends son, Chad Groepper. It is wonderful.