Man conquers 1st part of cancer journey and now needs help with second phase

After a year of radiation treatment, chemotherapy and surgery, Larry Creasman, 61, got the word recently that he is cancer-free.

Creasman, however, is not bill-free.

He and his wife, Barbara, along with several friends, hope to raise $30,000 for his treatment expenses with a fundraiser Thursday in downtown Grand Junction.

“What we’re trying to do, because it’s been such a long, hard year, is thank people who have made food and done all those things” that helped her and her husband through, Barbara Creasman said.

Barbara Creasman was the executive director of the Downtown Development Authority from 1988 to 2001 and now sells real estate. She worked for Mesa County from 1983 to 1988, conducting research and writing grants. Larry Creasman is a general contractor.

Neither has health insurance, which made it all the more frightening when Larry Creasman began suffering symptoms and was diagnosed in May with neck and throat cancer.

“It’s been a year’s ordeal,” Barbara Creasman said Tuesday. Larry Creasman was unavailable for comment, working on a small project for a longtime client, she said.

Larry Creasman first became aware of a problem when a lump in his neck simply wouldn’t go away.

At first, the Creasmans attributed the lump to influenza, possibly H1N1, but it eventually was diagnosed as cancer, and Larry began treatment, at one point undergoing 33 consecutive days of radiation treatment and chemotherapy.

“That’s pretty debilitating,” Barbara Creasman said.

Tests showed a small amount of cancer survived, however, so Larry Creasman had to undergo surgery.

The last year was difficult, Barbara Creasman said, but, “You don’t want to whine at all. You want to keep things positive and marching in the right direction.”

His most recent tests showed him to be cancer-free, so the Creasmans decided it was time to celebrate, say thanks and raise some money for the treatment.

After the Creasmans worked with St. Mary’s Hospital and his doctors, their bills were greatly reduced, but they want to raise $30,000 toward the treatment costs.

On Thursday from 2 to 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. to midnight, the Larry Creasman Cancer-free Fund-raiser will be at Naggy McGee’s Irish Pub, 359 Colorado Ave., where Larry Creasman designed and built the entryway.

Friends can donate to the cause at the event, or they can contribute to the Larry & Barbara Creasman Medical Fund at First National Bank of the Rockies, Attn: Cliff Sprinkle, 685 Horizon Drive, Grand Junction 81506.


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