Home for the Holidays

  • Wed Dec 20th, 2017 4:40pm
  • Life

By Christi Baron

Forks Forum Editor

A few weeks ago I shared some good news about some in our community who had experienced the gift of life through organ donation. There are other people in our community living with kidney disease, and the future remains uncertain.

Jeff Claussen travels three times a week to Port Angeles for dialysis. He spends about four hour hours each time receiving treatment. And when things get really bad, he has been taken by ambulance to Seattle.

Claussen was diagnosed with stage 3 kidney failure in 2012. By 2014 he could no longer work due to fatigue. “Just walking a short distance was a monumental task,” Claussen said.

Claussen said he believes 20 years of using Ibuprofen for back pain damaged his kidney. He is currently not on the transplant list but hopes that a family member will soon test to see if they are a match.

He urges people to be a donor. “It can help so many lives.

“I try to educate people and try not to complain; there are so many people that are worse off than me,” Claussen said.

Probably one of the worst situations is to spend Christmas in the hospital. For 9-year-old Orlando, that is what he and his family will do this year.

In a perfect world, nobody should ever have cancer and in any world, no child should ever have cancer. Orlando has been battling cancer for a while. He has been receiving treatment in Seattle for several months. In November, Orlando celebrated his ninth birthday there.

“We are okay,” Orlando’s mom said. “The only thing I need is for people to keep praying for Orlando to be okay and for him to be strong for his new stage of chemo.”

Orlando just found out he will be able to start getting chemotherapy. The treatments will last about seven months.

Orlando can have visitors, and when not in the hospital — Seattle Children’s Hospital — he and his family are at the Ronald McDonald House. You can also send Orlando a card at: The Ronald McDonald House, 5130 40th Ave. NE, Seattle, WA 98105.

“I just want to thank everyone for everything they did and are still doing for him,” Orlando’s mom added. “Orlando will be in Seattle for seven more months because the doctors needs to spread out his chemo, so Orlando body can handle (the) chemo.”

Get well soon, Orlando …

And now for something completely different!

“Oh, there’s no place like Forks for the holidays,

‘Cause no matter how far away you roam —

When you pine for the sunshine of a friendly face,

For the holidays — you call Forks, WA your home!

I met a man who lives in Wenatchee, and he was headin’ for

The West End and some wild blackberry pie;

From Port Angeles folks are travelin’ down to the Calawah’s rainy shore;

From the Sol Duc to Pacific —

Gee, the fishin’ is terrific!

Oh, there’s no place like Forks for the holidays

‘Cause no matter how far away you roam

If you want to be happy in a million ways

for the holidays you call Forks, Wa your home …

For the Holidays you call Forks, WA your home!!!”

Hoping you can be home for the holidays!