Benefit for local man aims to be family-oriented

PERU On July 9, Colby LaMonda was diagnosed with malignant metastatic germ cell tumors. With no medical insurance to help, LaMondas family is turning to the public for help. A benefit will be held for LaMonda next Sunday, Aug. 31, at Murphys Tavern on State Route 22B in the town of Peru. It will begin at 1 p.m. with various local bands providing some of the entertainment. We have Bootleg, we have Worst Case Scenario, we have CYA, said LaMondas older brother Christopher Parent, who explained there will also be plenty of games for children. Its more family-oriented. Colbys young, and hes got a kid thats going to like to go, and shes going to have a good time. Money will be raised at the benefit with the cost of a spaghetti dinner, which is $7. Children age five and younger receive a free meal. There will also be a darts tournament, as Parent and LaMonda were in a dart league together. The entry fee for that will be $10. Donations have already begun to trickle in for LaMonda, explained Parent, who works for Batatt in Plattsburgh. Parent said that as a company, Batatt donates a lot to the community and they seem to be returning the favor. [The communitys] been very good, he said. Weve had almost 200 donations so far. The donations are needed for LaMonda as he was diagnosed with cancer just three weeks prior to receiving health insurance through Batatt, where he also works. Parent explained because of the timing when he was diagnosed, the insurance company would not cover a previously existing medical condition. LaMonda has since signed up for Medicaid, but will not know for a few more weeks whether or not he has been accepted. Medical expenses are already high, as LaMonda has been undergoing chemotherapy since July 21. Parent explained his brother goes to the Fitzpatrick Cancer Center at CVPH Medical Center, where he receives various treatments for nearly nine hours a day. All of this began back in July when LaMonda passed out at work. Hed been going to the doctors for about six months, Parent said. The doctor told him it was bronchitis, put him on a steroid some kind of cough medicine with codine. The cough didnt go away. After some tests the doctors explained LaMonda had 12 tumors on his lungs, two on his kidneys and three on his brain. I guess when a childs being born, there is something that goes wrong between the sperm and the egg, explained Parent. It can cause tumors, but normally it starts in your testicles in a man, or your ovaries when youre a woman. For LaMonda, however, it was noticed in his lungs, where it was originally mistaken as lung cancer. As of now, the doctors have told LaMonda they are not going to operate but see how the chemotherapy helps. Parent explained radiation is also a possibility. Hes in good spirits, as much as you can be, as long as you keep him busy, said Parent. For further information about the benefit, including how to make a donation, contact Parent at 643-7989 or 569-1569.

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