LIBERTY TWP., Ohio (WKBN) — A cancer care center in Mexico may be a Liberty Township man’s last chance at life.
U.S. Post Office letter carrier Jim D’Errico, 40, was diagnosed with Stage IV neuroendocrine cancer in 2018.
This type of cancer grows slowly and doesn’t present many symptoms. It’s also quite rare.
At the time of his diagnosis, he was told he had a year to live. Despite the odds, D’Errico chooses to fight.
“I was always told, ‘Hey, you’ve got six months to live, you’ve got six months to live’ — and I kept getting past that,” D’Errico says. “I’ve got a young daughter, two teenage sons. I don’t want to go, yet … There’s got to be something to do to fight this.”
He has been receiving treatments at a center in Columbus. But in November of this year, things took an unfortunate turn.
“The disease had completely changed and started growing back in my liver. It spread in more lymph nodes. It’s now in my spleen,” D’Errico says.
Now, he’s told he has 11 months to live. His care team says the only possible treatment is at the Immunity Therapy Center in Mexico. However, the expensive treatment is not covered by his insurance.
“It’s frustrating when money is the way to keep someone alive. There shouldn’t be a price tag on someone’s health,” says Joe Simon, Liberty High School football coach and friend of D’Errico.
Simon and other close friends and family of D’Errico are now raising funds to keep him alive.
“I want to try and help him have as much time with his kids as possible,” Simon says. “Nobody knows when their time is going to come, but it’s tough when somebody tells you you have an expiration date.”
D’Errico says he is going to push through the pain.
“[I] want to be here for all these guys that show me support. I want to be here to see my kids grow up,” he says.