Bob Dedrick, known to family and friends as, "Deeds", is not a man who took sick days or was too tired to play with his children. He is an active husband and father of two, Jack, who is 4 years old, and, Macie, who is almost two! When Bob is not racing around with his children, he is remodeling a new home he and his wife, Mandy, recently purchased. After graduating from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in 1998, marrying the love of his life, and having two beautiful children, Bob's dreams and life goals were coming full circle.
Education and physical health always played a dominant role in "Deeds" life and his career. Bob received his masters degree and became a teacher in 2001, which led him to coaching the Varsity Track and Soccer teams. He was also working as an educational specialist for a new program, Discovery's Playground, for his Alma mater, Hobart and William Smith Colleges. Even though he was extremely busy as a teacher and coach, he also made time to focus on his own physical well-being. Bob has trained for and completed a marathon and some triathlons, most recently completing one in July 2011! He was in excellent health and stronger than ever when what started as an upset stomach turned into a life changing disease.
In October 2011, Bob had his first surgery and the results were unexpected, the doctors found stomach cancer. However, considering Bob's young age and his great health, everyone was optimistic and motivated to begin this battle. Bob began chemotherapy and did everything possible to fight the cancer. During his battle he did not ask why or stop to feel sorry for himself, he continued being as active a father as he possibly could.
Unfortunately, In early February 2012, Bob and Mandy were told the chemo was not affecting Bob's cancer and it was continuing to spread. The roller coaster of uplifting optimism and devastating despair seemed endless. This horrific news may have stopped others from having the will to live and the courage to fight, but not "Deeds". Mandy went on an extensive research escapade and found a Doctor who is a Natural Oncologist from Arizona. He offered some hope to the Dedrick family, so they went on a trip to Mexico that had been planned long before Bob's diagnosis. Through the sunshine and warmth, they found a glimmer of hope as they strolled the beach together and watched Jack and Macie playing in the ocean for the first time!
After an amazing trip to Mexico, another low struck because Bob was again admitted to the hospital due to complications, and the family felt they went from having months left with Bob, to weeks, to now only hours. Fortunately, the Palliative Care team who would be administering treatments to Bob in his own home helped alleviate some anxieties and once again lifted the Dedrick's spirits. Bob said, "Mandy and I finally were able to smile a bit, or as Mandy describes it, they put air back in our one singular balloon of hope above our head."
It is our hope that The Bob Dedrick Education Fund can provide one more balloon of hope for the Dedrick family, one more overwhelming concern alleviated. For now, Bob is at home continuing to fight for every second he has with his family. Before he was sent home on Palliative Care, he wrote, "I need to sometimes just step back, push the pain away, let the fear of the future go, and know that the next moment I have to deal with is the only one that is important. "A theme that has surfaced throughout Bob's diagnosis is practicing, "Good Deeds". Please take a moment to do a simple, Good Deed, and make a donation to the Bob Dedrick Education Fund , set up for Jack and Macie to help them go to college.