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December 16, 2014     Cape Gazette
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26 TUESDAY, DECEMBER 16-THURSDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2014 HEALTH m FITNESS Cape Gazette ) Rehoboth single morn fights for awareness of rare autoimmune disorder With Christmas 2014 quickly as an independent contractor. approaching, Cheryl Vogl can't "There have been so many help but think back to the same times over the last three years period three years ago and to a that the Oldfathers have been time when, overwhelmed and ex- there for me, helping out just hausted, she spent the holiday in by giving me something to do her bedroom closet. She wanted, or somewhere to be," says Vogl, even needed, to completely block who is able to work part time out any light or noises from the from home while her son is un- outside world, and that seemed dergoing treatment. "I definitely the only place where she could need the income that these work- adequately do so. related tasks provide, but I also The former professional needed somewhere to belong. counselor turned independent Being a part of the Oldfather contractor had just endured a team is a much-needed spot of month no parent Should ever normalcy and consistency in have to endure, watching help- what has been an incredibly tur- lessly as her ll-month-old son bulent time in my life." Silas underwent one chemother- Throughout her struggles, apy treatment after another at Vogl has had the support of many A.I. DuPont Children's Hospital in the community and, later this in Wilmington. month, ground will be broken September on Diagnosed in 2011 a new Habitat for Humanity , ith a rare blend of autoimmune home in Ellendale where she and disorder and cancer known as . her son will soon reside. histiocytosis, young Silas now Now an outspoken supporter undergoes regular treatments of the Habitat program, Vogl is ranging from x-rays and MRIs to a model applicant to support the CT and PET scans in an effort to mission and the goals of Habitat contain the disease, which is in for Humanity. both the skin and bones of the There are a lot of women in now nearly 4-year-old boy. the Sussex County Habitat for "I was just so tired and over- Humanity program like Vogl, whelmed from all those trips to women who currently have a DuPont and seeing my son go disabled child in their home. through those chemo treatments Making them part of the Habitat that I iust wanted to lay in that program furthers the organiza- loset and sleep for as long as I tion's goals of offering a hand up could while Silas was with his rather than a handout. dad for the holiday," admits Vogl, "People come to us from a who says her son has been under lot of different places, people anesthesia no less than 15 times who are on different tracks but so far in his young life. "I had have had their lives changed in spent most of those four months an instant," says Kevin Gilmore, in a state of shock, and it all just executive director of Sussex kind of hit me during Christmas." County Habitat for Humanity. Since her son's diagnosis Sept. "What we can do is stabilize 12, 2011, Vogl's life has been their housing situations and turned upside down in a way she their housing costs, which allows never could have imagined. Once them to work on other areas of earning a nice income and living their lives. It's great that a pro- in a stable home, while also clos- gram like ours can be the help ing in on her master's degree, she that they often need." now finds herself a single mother Since her son's diagnosis, Vogl a disabled child and an un- has also become a champion for certain future, histiocytosis awareness. But not one to sit back and It's a disease she admittedly become a victim, she has per- knew nothing about prior to severed with the help of a few her son's diagnosis in 2011, but local organizations, as well as the Vogl has spoken about her situ- owners of the Oldfather Group of ation many times over the last Ocean Atlantic Sotheby's Inter- few years and even addressed national Realty in Rehoboth and lawmakers at Legislative Hall in Bethany Beach, where she works Dover in 2013. SUBMITTED PHOTO CHERYL AND SILAS VOGL, center, stand with Dustin and Mariya Oldfather If the Oldfather Group of Ocean Atlantic Sotheby's International Realty on March 20, 2013, the day the Delaware Senate passed a resolution regarding awareness of histiocytic disorders. After she made a passionate plea to state legislators, Resolu- tion 11 unanimously passed the Delaware Senate, after passing by a voice vote in the House of Rep- resentatives, March 20, 2013. The resolution emphasizes the lack of public awareness of histiocytic disorders and encourages strong efforts to develop cures. Next on Vogl's to-do list is rais- ing enough money to provide her son with a trained service dog through the national 4 Paws for the dark one night some months Ability program. This will cost ago, caressing her ailing son's several thousand dollars and back and mouthing a silent won't happen overnight, but the prayer that she would somehow, determined single m0theris0na some way, be afforded a good mission to make it happen, home and a stable job. And who can doubt her? But "I was crying in the dark and while Vogl's situation is begin- praying so hard that night, and ning to improve, she also realizes I still can't believe that both of that her life and the life of her son those things came true," she ad- will never again be what most mits. "My son and I have faced a parents would consider normal, tough road these last few years, Still, she remembers sitting in but we're going to be OK." Ith Ne IS now in .f . Serious solutions to complex brain problems. From concussion testing to treating brain and spine problems, our neurosurgeons, Dr. James Mills and Dr. Dunbar Alcindor, are prepared to care for your needs in Lewes. You will receive the same exceptional care that the Dover community has come to expect from Bayhealth Neurosurgery. Our new Lewes office is located at 34446-2 King Street Row, right off Route 1 (Lewes Ferry turnoff). Please call our office at 302-526-1470 to schedule an appointment at either location. Also visit our website at www.bayhealth.org/neurosurgery to learn more about our comprehensive services. KENT GENERAL [ MILFORD MEMORIAL w v.bayhealth.org Explore the possibifities here.