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SHERRI TENNANT'S STORY

Sherri always wanted to rest in a place that her friends and family could see her whenever they wished. Please visit her memorial in Pleasant Hill. Sherri's urn and small treasures can be seen at the Queen of Heaven Catholic Cemetery, Mausoleum of the Angels, located at 1965 Reliez Valley Road, Lafayette, CA 94549, (925) 932-0900. Take Treat Blvd thru Taylor, make right on Pleasant Hill Road, left on Withers, and then right on Reliez. The cemetery is on your left after about .5 miles.

 
Sherri's Notes Sherri's Notes Sherri's Notes
 

Sherri, we all love you very much and will miss your beautiful face, radiant smile and vibrant personality!


PAST HISTORY

Sherri passed away peacefully with her family at her side on Saturday, September 2, 2006. After a long and courageous battle with Melanoma Cancer, she was able to spend her last week at home. Sherri was an incredible woman, Mother, Wife and Friend to so many people - she will be missed dearly. It's only fitting that I include pictures of Justin above, as she would often said to him, "You have made my life worth living." Don't think of her as gone away- her journey has just begun, life holds so many facets- this earth is only one. Just think of Sherri as resting from the sorrows and the tears in a place of warmth and comfort where there are no days and years. Think how she must be wishing that we could know today how nothing but our sadness can really pass away. And think of Sherri as living in the hearts of those she touched...for nothing loved is ever lost - and Sherri was loved so much.

August 2006

Sherri stayed at John Muir from 8/5 - 8/11. She was not getting any sleep, and the tests and scans showed no infections that were treatable. While at home, she continued to decline and had fevers and fatigue. We administered daily antibiotics via IV in an attempt to treat infection of some kind. After a few days at home, I needed to admit her again on 8/16. Gall Bladder surgery on Friday, August 18th was thought to relieve some pain and fevers. The fevers and fatigue continued a few days after surgery. We came home on August 26th to allow Sherri to be in peace in her home, room and bed. In the last week of August, Sherri was with family and friends by her side the entire time. We made her as comfortable as possible as nurses were with her each day. Sherri passed away early Saturday morning, September 2nd.

July 2006

We were able to make a road trip to Sherri's family property in South Dakota early July. We saw many sites while we were there as Sherri was feeling better than the month before. On our way to SD, we were able to visit the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone. While in SD, we visited the popular Wall Drug and The Badlands, took several ATV rides and enjoyed some fireworks. During our stay, Sherri began feeling very fatigued, and on July 14th, flew back to NIH to try to find out why she was so tired. Sherri returned to Walnut Creek on July 22nd, spent a week at home before being admitted to John Muir in August for dehydration and fatigue.

June 2006

Early in June we were home, but fevers had us at John Muir Medical Center on June 2nd. Sherri stayed in the hospital for a week while multiple tests were done to try to locate the infection causing the fevers. Sherri left for NCI on Sunday, June 18th and started the second course of IL2 treatment on Monday. After seven doses, Sherri finished her IL2 on June 21st and after several days of recovery; she was given a pass for the weekend and stayed with Justin & me at the Family Lodge before coming home on June 27th.

May 2006

May was an intense month of treatment. In the first week, TIL protocol began with 7-days of chemotherapy. This was immediately followed by Vaccine, cells and IL-2. Sherri received several pints of blood, became neutropenic, and was hospitalized the entire month of May during the treatment. Her mother came up from Florida on Mother's Day - a very special treat! Sherri also developed a terrible reaction to a Sulfa antibiotic that gave her a severe rash and blisters on her arms, face and chest. It was almost as if she was a 3rd degree burn victim. NCI gave her clearance to fly home on May 22nd to finish recovering at home.

April 2006

Sherri returned to NCI from April 12-22 to undergo preparations for her May protocol. This included a blood transfusion called, Apheresis, where the blood is collected and a percentage is separated. This was also a week of CT's, Scan, and many other X-rays. She returned on April 30th to begin her second attempt at stopping this terrible disease from growing or spreading.

March 2006

We traveled back to NCI on March 5th to prepare for a second round of IL-2 treatment. Sherri had received a total of 16-doses in two separate 'one-week' in-patient treatment protocols. We found out that the tumors had grown and a new one needed to be removed from her abdomen. Instead of continuing the treatment, we switched gears and Sherri went in for laparoscopic abdominal surgery. NCI wanted to try a new protocol on Sherri called TIL or Tumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes. They remove the person's tumor, harvest the cells, and then infuse them back in the patient along with high-dose IL-2.

December 2005

Sherri received a total of 16-doses of high dose IL-2 in a four week period. She received this treatment at NCI in Bethesda, MD. This was our third trip to the DC already since December 2005. She received 10-doses the first week, followed by another 6-doses the second week. The first round started on December 27th thru January 4, while the second session started on January 15th and we returned on January 23rd. IL-2 is an FDA approved treatment in the effort of fighting cancer. Sherri was selected to receive this treatment after visiting in early December for a consult and qualifying with the correct blood type. While we were anxious about being 3,000 miles away from home, we knew we were in one of the best places to receive melanoma treatment in the world. On Dec 7th, we flew to The National Cancer Institute, NCI, in Bethesda, MD for a consultation visit and pre-screening. We stayed for a few days to visit our Nations Capitol and see the DC area sprinkled with snow. Sherri was called back by NCI and asked to come out to Maryland for treatment and to be a patient at NCI.

November 2005

On November 11th, Sherri was given a positron emission tomography. (PET), scan to view what we felt was a lump in her left lower abdomen. The PET scan showed metastasis in her lower abdomen and spots in her liver. This finding moved Sherri to a Stage IV, also known as Metastatic Melanoma (a stage in cancer in which the disease spreads from the original site to another body organ). After researching several oncologists at UCSF Melanoma Clinic, Diablo Valley Oncology, John Wayne Cancer Institute and the National Cancer Institute, NCI, in Bethesda, MD., we are reviewing the best options for Sherri's next step. 

Sherri was diagnosed with Malignant Melanoma eight years ago. In 1997, after a lymph-node dissection and surgery, she received a Cancer Vaccine from John Wayne Cancer Institute for the following 2.5 years. She had been in remission until November 2005.


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Sherri Tennant Melanoma Cancer Awareness & Research Foundation, SCARF, is a Non-Profit Organization
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