IRETON—What started as an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, Oct. 9, turned into the opposite for Ron Hulshof Jr. of rural Ireton.
The husband and father of six went to the doctor’s office feeling abnormally tired and unwell. His preliminary test results alarmed the doctor and he was sent immediately to Sanford in Sioux Falls, SD, where he was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia, or CML.
Doctors discovered he also had pneumonia for which he was given antibiotics. He also began chemotherapy his leukemia. Hulshof was tolerating the treatments at home until Thursday, Oct. 31, when he was admitted to the Orange City hospital with a high fever. He was then transferred by ambulance to Sanford in Sioux Falls. After tests and CT scan, the results showed new and growing masses on both of his lungs. Results of biopsies of those masses revealed he also had developed histoplasmosis, which is a fungal infection.
Doctors at Sanford temporarily stopped Ron’s chemo treatments and have put him on a new treatment plan of anti-fungal medication and steroids. A different chemotherapy treatment will need to be done that is safe with the anti-fungal meds.
At home, Ron will go to the Orange City hospital daily for two weeks to receive infusions and then eight more weeks after to take oral medications.
Hulshof, his wife, Martha, and their six children — Wyatt, Tyrell, Cheyenne, Jesse, Cassidy and Ethan — live on a farm between Ireton and Maurice. Hulshof is a trucker and does custom bailing. Martha is a day care provider and keeps the busy family on schedule. Since Hulshof’s illness, neither have been able to work.
A benefit auction, supper and bake sale will be held at 5 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29, at the Ireton Christian School. Supper is at 5 p.m. and the auction will begin at 6 p.m. If you would like to find out how you can help or to donate, contact Sara Hulshof at 712-278-2486 or Cari Van Zweden at 712-574-3600. Auction items, baked goods or any monetary donations may also be dropped off at Ireton Vet Clinic or Sioux Center Vet Clinic.