Tyler was a very active and athletic boy before he was diagnosed with cancer at age 12. On January 15, 2002, doctors found Ewing Sarcoma in Tyler’s left tibia/fibula with metastasis in his lungs. He underwent almost a year of chemotherapy with six weeks of radiation to both areas and finished treatment November 8, 2002. When his pain returned in the summer of 2004, a second biopsy on October 8, 2004 showed that Tyler had indeed relapsed with metastases to the lungs.
After almost three more years of “quality of life” chemotherapy and chronic pain in his leg, Tyler decided along with his doctors that amputation may just give him the cure that he was hoping for. On July 31, 2007, Tyler had his left leg amputated above the knee. He quickly adjusted to life as an amputee and worked hard to get back to a normal life. Tyler began training to participate in a triathlon for challenged athletes, and continued to follow sports religiously, especially his Ohio State Buckeyes, beloved Red Sox, Green Bay Packers, and the Atlanta Thrashers.
On May 27, 2008 Tyler’s scans showed many tumors growing in his lungs. With no options left for a cure Tyler chose to live his life to the fullest without any more treatments. He passed away in his sleep in the early morning hours of Aug 7, 2008, at the age of 19. A couple of unfinished items on his bucket list included watching the 2008 Summer Olympics and voting for President in November.
Tyler often said that kids with cancer didn’t seem to have a voice in raising money/awareness for childhood cancer. That is why he worked so hard with Rally Foundation- so that someday, other kids would have great choices for treatment and a greater hope for a cure.