The Dover Elks Lodge was packed Saturday as friends and family gathered to show their support at the “EFF Cancer” benefit for Smyrna High graduate Tyler Gebhart who was diagnosed with testicular cancer in December.
Tyler, 22, was away at school this fall in North Carolina attending the College of Albemarle when he first realized something was wrong. Noticing some discomfort, he went to the doctor when he moved back home. By this time, the discomfort had moved to his back, lymph nodes, lungs and finally a lesion on his brain.
Following some tests with Dr. Doug Chervenak at Bayhealth-Kent General Hospital, it was determined that Tyler’s discomfort was testicular cancer and the fight against the disease began.
“He’s handling this very well. He doesn’t let it keep him down,” said Kyle Gebhart, Tyler’s dad.
Since the December diagnosis, Tyler has had surgery and started chemotherapy treatment. He will undergo chemo for four months with a rotating schedule of one week of chemo and two weeks off.
Tyler isn’t alone in the fight and his loved ones showed him that at the benefit on Saturday. What was supposed to be a small event at a Dover bar grew so much, the benefit had to be moved to the Elks lodge.
For those in the attendance, the day was much more than something to do on a Saturday night. The benefit featured live music, auction items, “Team Tgebz” t-shirts, and more all done to raise money to help with Tyler’s medical cost.
Kyle Gebhart said this was the first benefit they’ve had and at this point there’s no plan for more; however, there will be a “Team Tgebz” at Smyrna’s first-ever Relay for Life in May.
Jennifer Foraker was in attendance to show her support and helped raise money by selling cake pops at the event. She said she was surprised when first hearing of Tyler’s diagnosis.
“What makes it worse is that it’s someone you know, you never think that someone you know will have this happen to them,” Foraker said.
Thus far in the fight, she said Tyler is doing really well and continues to be in high spirits.
“He’s always been like this, a bubbly person,” Foraker said. “He tries not to let it bother him or if he’s down, he doesn’t show it.”
Page 2 of 2 - For those who couldn’t attend the benefit, you still have a chance to donate. Donations can be made to “For the Benefit for Tyler Gebhart,” Citizens Bank, 8 W. Loockerman St., Dover, DE 19904.
Donations can also be made at the “Team Tgebz” website at http://www.teamtgebz.org/.
Email Jennifer Dailey at email@example.com.