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bopanic
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 9:45 am Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
hi all,

i know its been a while since ive spent a good bit of time on the board here, some things in my life have changed, lots of travel, new girlfriend, the list goes on. im not making excuses, i do miss this place a lot, just seem much too busy these days to be spending so much time on the internet. i do keep up with many of you thru other avenues of communication and i hope everyone is doing well!

i come to you guys now with a little info on a friend of mine, and a friend of some of yalls! "ruralvoice" aka, barry breen (who most of you have met even if you dont know it. barry is a huge old crow fan and a really stand up guy! he is going thru a diffcult time right now, having a lot of health issues. id just like to ask that if you know barry, heck even if you dont please keep an oldcrowfan in your thoughts, and even your prayers if yall dont mind!

barry sent me this email last night, and since its sunday i thought id share this with yall. barry has never been anything but nice to me and my little brother and i hope he can kick this thing!

good luck ruralvoice, we will be thinking about ya!

yall be good...
~bo martindale

Bo,

I have been diagnosed with amyloidosis. This is a very serious illness and in order to have a chance of survival I will have to have treatment at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, FL.

This is a very rare disease that is not something doctors normally look for, and that is why it has taken about one year to diagnose since serious symptoms were starting to appear. Eight people in one million have it. There is no known cause or known triggers. It can be hereditary.

What occurs is this: A substance called amyloids are produced in either the bone marrow or the liver (depending on the kind you have, AL or ATTR, respectively). They are an abnormal kind of insoluble protein (not the kind of protein you think of when eating, etc.). The amyloids go to one or more of your functional systems (GI, renal, heart, etc.). In my case they have attached the GI system first, namely small intestines. The amyloid substance builds up and because it is insoluble the body cannot get rid of it. It gradually degrades the function of the item/system it is attacking, and eventually causing organ failure.

In my case, I was suffering weight loss for unknown reasons (about a pound a month). I am down to about 133 from a normal 152 (I'm 5-10). The doctors ran about every GI test known to man with all negative results, but in the process they found my gallbladder was malfunctioning so it was removed. However, I also noticed that I was suffering from weakness/fatigue and some dizziness. I had gone to the Mayo clinic for follow up after the gallbladder removal in June, and they wanted to watch my metabolism for about 60 days to see if that might stabilize things. In the meantime I went for my annual cardiological exam (I started doing that after age 60; I'm now 64). I did a stress test with echo-cardiogram and nuclear imaging. The test was abnormal. I then underwent an angiogram, and that showed no blockages in arteries or veins at all. At this point the cardiologist suspected I might have amyloidosis (he had recalled studying it in medical school; he is about 38 years old).

The rest is history. I had two biopsies (very minor biospies under general anesthesia); they both came back positive for amyloid about one week ago, 9/24.

I have been a busy bee since then. I have an appointment with the Hematology/Oncology department at the Mayo in Jacksonville on Thursday (Oct 8th). They need to determine the type of amyloids I have (AL or ATTR) and then a course of treatment. Unfortunately, the damage to organs is not reversible; so, if we can stop the production of amyloids I will have to determine how to get sufficient nutrients to stop losing weight.

The treatment will likely consist of either aggressive chemotherapy to kill all the bone marrow and then to re-grow new marrow with stem cell transplant (if AL amyloid), or liver transplant (if ATTR amyloid). The Mayo in Jacksonville is one of the foremost facilities for chemo, bone marrow and liver transplants.

Well, this has been an epic journey, and I feel like I have been "chasing this health ghost" for a year. I tried to articulate it in summary form above so you might understand as completely as possible. I now have to undertake this journey.


I would really like to enjoy a few more years of retirement with normal health. You can imagine the medical records I have transmitted, and those which I am also carrying down there next week. All kinds of digital images on CD and DVD. I also wrote and sent a 69 page report, which I prepared last Thurs and Friday.

I had to cancel my trip to California to see OCMS in Hollywood, CA, but maybe some other time.

That's all for now.

Your friend,

Barry
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Barry E. Breen
bebreen@charter.net
<http://webpages.charter.net/bebreen>
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Last edited by bopanic on Sun Oct 04, 2009 12:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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pittsyltucky
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 10:39 am Reply with quote
*Johnny* Joined: 15 Sep 2006 Posts: 4268 Location: Pigg River District, Pittsylvania County, Virginia
Godspeed, Barry... Pulling for ya, man.

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therodge
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 10:24 pm Reply with quote
*Law Dog* Joined: 17 Oct 2004 Posts: 6546 Location: Nashville, Tennessee
dang, really really really sorry to hear that! Definitely will be praying for Barry!



I'm still looking for the hi-res verison of the pic above.

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pittsyltucky
Posted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 10:35 pm Reply with quote
*Johnny* Joined: 15 Sep 2006 Posts: 4268 Location: Pigg River District, Pittsylvania County, Virginia
^ One of the best days of my life... Whooooooo!

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bopanic
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 6:18 am Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
i thought that pic might turn up in here... Very Happy

ill keep you guys posted if barry lets me know anything else!
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kg
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 6:47 am Reply with quote
*Data Miner* Joined: 30 Jun 2007 Posts: 3427
Bo, thanks for sharing the news about Barry. We'll join together in prayer and 'good vibes' for him. Please let him know that his Old Crow friends are thinking of him.

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Kitty
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 7:46 am Reply with quote
*Mrs. Kitty* Joined: 23 Oct 2006 Posts: 2344 Location: Durham, NC
Ditto what kg said.... wishing Barry strength to get through the trials and troubles ahead of him. First hurdle is cleared now that they have a diagnosis and can actually begin treatment.
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Chigger
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 10:11 am Reply with quote
*Lucky No. 7* Joined: 30 Jul 2008 Posts: 1358 Location: McMinnville, Tennessee
Yes, Barry is a great guy. I got to see him for a minute at the Big Suprise in Nashville and noticed he looked a bit different, but I had no idea he was having health problems. I'll be praying for you, buddy!

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Benmancrowfan
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:19 am Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 17 Sep 2008 Posts: 570 Location: Jackson, Miss
good luck barry, our thoughts are with you!

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merlin
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 5:04 pm Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 27 Oct 2007 Posts: 553 Location: God's Country
My thoughts and prayers are with you Barry. I can still see Barry holding the Sciota sign in Nashville last year. good times! Get better man!

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The14weed
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 5:22 pm Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 31 Aug 2009 Posts: 323 Location: Northern California
Praying for you brother...

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lbrod
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:02 pm Reply with quote
*Bloodshot Hot Rod* Joined: 02 Jul 2008 Posts: 1358 Location: Beneath Pacheco Pass
Sorry you couldn't make it out to LA, Barry. You will be in all our prayers.
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TN Jim
Posted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:21 pm Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 23 Oct 2007 Posts: 338 Location: Greeneville-East Tn
I'll be thinking about you up here in East Tn Barry. So glad I got to meet you & pittsy in Knoxville last Dec. Can't wait to do it again.

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trtle8819
Posted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:56 am Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 01 Apr 2007 Posts: 332 Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
Thanks for the info, Bo. I always enjoy seeing Barry at shows. I think we've crossed paths at least 4 maybe 5 times. The dart tournament in Nashville, the SCIOTA sheet, the hokey pokey in Athens. My thoughts are with you.
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GumboStu
Posted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:28 am Reply with quote
*Irish Stew* Joined: 03 Oct 2007 Posts: 3666 Location: Joe's Cornfield
good luck ruralvoice. There's a ton of goodwill comin your way from Ireland.

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therodge
Posted: Fri Oct 09, 2009 12:33 pm Reply with quote
*Law Dog* Joined: 17 Oct 2004 Posts: 6546 Location: Nashville, Tennessee
trtle8819 wrote:
Thanks for the info, Bo. I always enjoy seeing Barry at shows. I think we've crossed paths at least 4 maybe 5 times. The dart tournament in Nashville, the SCIOTA sheet, the hokey pokey in Athens. My thoughts are with you.


sheesh, such great times! We're gonna have many many more

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bopanic
Posted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:26 pm Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
amen rodge!

heres another update from barry...

bo,

what a great place at the mayo clinic here in jacksonville, florida. i had my first exam and already have had a jillion tests on my blood (i think i still have some left.....). they did a complete scan of all my bones today (for whatever that tells them) and i have an mri of my heart tomorrow (10/9). next tuesday i have a bone marrow test and then meet with the doctor for a review of all the initial mayo tests. that will determine what other tests they need in order to figure a course of treatment.

by the way, always thinking positive, i have requested my contact at the ryman to get me 2 tickets to the new years eve OCMS show. since i was at the clinic i couldn't do pre-sale. I sure hope i can hear them do "lift him up" and "fall on my knees". i love those songs.

i will keep y'all posted.

barry (aka: ruralvoice)
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Benmancrowfan
Posted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 3:50 pm Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 17 Sep 2008 Posts: 570 Location: Jackson, Miss
man, someone needs to get in touch with the boys to see if we can make those two songs happen...
anyway to lift a brothers spirits!

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pittsyltucky
Posted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 5:30 pm Reply with quote
*Johnny* Joined: 15 Sep 2006 Posts: 4268 Location: Pigg River District, Pittsylvania County, Virginia
It's gonna happen --- and Barry's gonna be right there with us...

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bopanic
Posted: Sun Oct 11, 2009 10:19 pm Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
pittsyltucky wrote:
Barry's gonna be right there with us...


AMEN!!!
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Kitty
Posted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 7:32 am Reply with quote
*Mrs. Kitty* Joined: 23 Oct 2006 Posts: 2344 Location: Durham, NC
Hey Bo.... do you have a mailing addy for Barry? Just thinking he might like to get some words of encouragement through the USPS.
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pittsyltucky
Posted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 10:37 am Reply with quote
*Johnny* Joined: 15 Sep 2006 Posts: 4268 Location: Pigg River District, Pittsylvania County, Virginia
^ Yes.

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indeedinoditsistern
Posted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 9:13 am Reply with quote
*Garfunkled* Joined: 22 Jan 2008 Posts: 1523 Location: Hokes Bluff AL.
seems like KNEES has fallen out of the rotation lately. i think huntsville was the last i saw of it.
anyone?
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bopanic
Posted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 1:34 pm Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
Kitty wrote:
Hey Bo.... do you have a mailing addy for Barry? Just thinking he might like to get some words of encouragement through the USPS.


i can PM his addy to anyone who wants it!
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Chigger
Posted: Tue Oct 13, 2009 8:22 pm Reply with quote
*Lucky No. 7* Joined: 30 Jul 2008 Posts: 1358 Location: McMinnville, Tennessee
Yeah, Bo, could you send it to me? I'd like to send him a card and well wishes.

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bopanic
Posted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:50 pm Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
Chigger wrote:
Yeah, Bo, could you send it to me? I'd like to send him a card and well wishes.


sure thing...
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Chigger
Posted: Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:32 pm Reply with quote
*Lucky No. 7* Joined: 30 Jul 2008 Posts: 1358 Location: McMinnville, Tennessee
'preciate it, man.

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bopanic
Posted: Tue Oct 27, 2009 1:26 pm Reply with quote
*King of da Vuld* Joined: 04 Dec 2005 Posts: 4190 Location: Nashville, TN
another update from barry...

Bo,

Got back from the Mayo Clnic this week. All tests to date are indicating I have the ATTR form of amyloidosis. If this is true (and I should have confirming test results later this coming week), I would be a candidate for a liver transplant. That is the only way of treating ATTR. So, you know me, I am already working that direction so that I can save time, especially since once you get approved you go on a list, and the wait can be up to a year. I hope it is not that long since my body's systems are undergoing attack by the amyloid protein substance.
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Chigger
Posted: Tue Oct 27, 2009 6:30 pm Reply with quote
*Lucky No. 7* Joined: 30 Jul 2008 Posts: 1358 Location: McMinnville, Tennessee
"So, you know me, I am already working that direction"

The prognosis sucks, but Barry sure is on top of things...

I'll be praying for you, man.

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Benmancrowfan
Posted: Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:47 pm Reply with quote
Old Crow Joined: 17 Sep 2008 Posts: 570 Location: Jackson, Miss
it is so good to hear that he still stays positive through it all. Stay strong Barry you're in our prayers!

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East and West the Highway Rolls, Lord Have Mercy on My Poor Soul!
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