Central Okanagan News
A beloved teacher fights for his life
Brad Low is 34-years-old, newly married to his gorgeous wife Angelina, a brand new father to 1-month-old Mackenzie and a beloved teacher at Davidson Road Elementary in Lake Country.
A few weeks ago Brad’s life was literally flipped upside down and his entire focus changed from family, friends and career to survival when he was diagnosed with Leukemia.
Now the community is rallying behind a man they call a formidable character, an excellent husband, father and teacher and an all around good guy.
Tanya Schiling is a mother of one of Brad’s students and wrote to Castanet sharing his story and the community attempt to fundraise for his young family.
Schiling says Brad is a teacher that goes beyond for his students and impacts their lives everyday. She wrote to us, “A story should be done about this outstanding citizen, he has always given to his students and now he needs our help!”
Brie Turcotte also wrote into Castanet and shared how his family now needs the community's help. “Who better to help than a teacher in our community that is shaping the next generation,” wrote Turcotte.
Castanet spoke with Brad’s mother Lorna Low. In the touching and heartfelt interview, Lorna explained her love for her son and the man he is today. She shared the fears they now face as a family and the challenges coming up.
“It was quite devastating for everybody because he is young and just starting out his life and he has this little girl and now he has to away from her and from his wife and away from home,” shared Lorna Low.
On January 30, 2014 Brad’s family took him Kelowna General Hospital where they learned he had been diagnosed with Leukemia. Lorna and Brad were medi-vac’d down to Vancouver where he had further testing done.
It was confirmed he had the APL type of Leukemia and chemotherapy began right away.
Brad will remain in hospital for one month before he is transferred to a cancer facility and remains under treatment in Vancouver for at least six months, and this is where the costs come in.
Six months in Vancouver unable to work and away from family is a huge expense that he now has to face.
“It’s like any young couple who are starting out, they don’t quite have the finances at the beginning so they are struggling and their friends have stepped in to help,” explained Lorna.
“His medical and insurance plans don’t cover a lot of these extra expenses.”
Brad’s friends took to social media and the Internet to rally together to help cover the expenses of this young father and his family and so far the response has been outstanding.
In just over seven days, over 200 people had raised $17,690 for the young family. The comments with the donations are nothing short of inspiring.
“I was reading some of the comments and it was truly amazing,” shared Lorna through tears.
“Like comments from students he taught several years ago on how much they impacted their lives. And parents of the students he taught are putting comments on about how impressed they were with him as a teacher and how he affected their kids lives and made them better.”
Lorna also says those comments and the amazing community support has kept Brad going.
“He has been truly overwhelmed by all of it as well, and it has been a good pick-me-up for him and it is keeping him positive knowing he has so much love out there for him.”
Although no cancer is a good thing, APL Leukemia has a high survival rate and doctors are optimistic Brad will fight through this.
“The doctors were positive with their prognosis that they feel he will be in the high per cent of people that do beat it, although they cannot make any promises,” shared Lorna.
“Doctors say it will take at least two years for Brad to be back to normal and feeling good and being able to do all the things he was able to do before the diagnosis.”
Brad is still in Vancouver and his family is heading down this week to visit him for the first time since his first week of treatment.
“All around he is amazing son and we are very proud of him,” Lorna Low shared through tears.
To donate to Brad Low's family online click here or via the bank you can use the account at Bank of Montreal - account number is 0779 8971-712 or it can also be searched by name (Brad Low).
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