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May of 2017 Jim Marinelli was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. His diagnosis came after months of not feeling like himself and a series of tests. After his diagnosis our family jumped into aggressively fighting this horrible disease. Jim got chemotherapy every 2 weeks for 15 months. At first we had amazing success with his chemo regimen, his cancer decreased drastically in size and we were able to minimize his symptoms with the help of his amazing team at Dana Farber. In the summer of 2018 Jim hadn’t been feeling well and we got news that his chemo regimen wasn’t working anymore. We’ve moved on to the next line of action - 2 new chemotherapy drugs that his cancer hadn’t seen before. Jim was on this chemo for the next several months before it again stopped working. Jim switched back to the original chemotherapy regime with hopes that it had been long enough since his cancer had seen it. In April of 2019 we received the news that the chemo was no longer working. Jim, being the fighter that he was, immediately turned his sights to clinical trial drugs and began to look at options. After discussing with his doctors and our family we decided to begin focusing only on Jim's comfort and allowing him to enjoy his time with us. We focused on laughing and joking together rather than driving back and forth to Boston for infusions. We focused on embracing children and grandchildren. Jim was told he had "weeks" on May 9th. In typical Jim fashion he pushed past that diagnosis and fought for 2 months. Jim was a warrior. For 26 months Jim endured countless chemotherapy treatments, dozens of scans, and lots of symptoms and side effects. He never complained. He was thankful and grateful for everything and everyone in his life. Jim passed away on June 30th, 2019 just after 11:30pm. He was comfortable at home surrounded by his loved ones. Up until the last day he was talking with us, laughing with us, giving baby Shea kisses and even yelling at us when we got too rowdy watching Live PD. We are so thankful for the outpouring of love we have received in the past 2 years. It does not go unnoticed how loved big Jim still is. We hope that everyone continues sharing memories of Jim. We also hope that people continue to spread awareness about pancreatic cancer and the warning signs. We, as a family, strive to raise money through PANCAN in hopes that one day a breakthrough will be made and we can tackle pancreatic cancer.
Anyone that knows our family knows that we can never sit still and we’re always working. We’ve put our determination and love for our big Jim into the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. This will be our third year walking in the PurpleStride walk to raise money for pancreatic cancer awareness and research. Over the past two years our team Tito’s>Chemos was able to raise over 70,000 dollars and we were the number 1 team in the entire walk consecutively. We’ve said it a million times and we can’t say it enough - we are so thankful for everyone’s support and prayers. But we are not done!! We want to raise as much money as we can so please think about donating or joining our team!! The more the merrier and every little bit of money helps!
The Marinelli Family