Fighting Cancer With A “Breath Of Fresh Air”
By Kaitlyn Nuebel
Luis Gonzalez sits in a beige recliner near the entranceway of his home. He’s thin for 28. His feet barely touch the floor when he leans back, but it does not matter – his grin turns the chair into a throne.
Gonzalez lives in the Dominican Republic and attends a government-funded cancer institute in the province of Santo Domingo. His cancer, debilitating, has spread to his bones; his attention, though, has not.
Receiving the chair “was like a breath of fresh air for [Gonzalez],” Gonzalez’ mother said.
Before arriving in Gonzalez’ entrance way wearing a shrink-wrap coat, the “throne” lived at a Liberty Dialysis in Washington, Pennsylvania, where it comforted patients as they underwent their hours-long dialysis treatments. It would later be donated to Brother’s Brother Foundation and loaded onto a 40-foot container heading to the Dominican Republic. Once there, the chair would get and give a renewed sense of life.
Before the donation, “we had to sit him in a wooden rocking chair that was quite uncomfortable for him. We are so thankful to the donor for providing this gift to our son,” she said.
Other friends and family members also stand beside Gonzales and support him as he fights cancer. It’s a battle Gonzalez is committed to winning. “If this disease beats me, it will not be because I surrendered to it,” he said.