ABBOTSFORD – A fundraising effort in support of an Abbotsford father’s battle with brain cancer has reached it’s halfway mark. But time is running out to raise the remaining funds for 45 year old Ryan Masales.
Masales was working at his job as a police officer in Abbotsford on August 26th, 2016 when he collapsed. He suffered a grand mal seizure and was transported to hospital. A series of tests, a brain surgery and a biopsy revealed a devastating diagnosis.
Masales was told he suffered from Glioblastoma Multiforme, the same brain cancer that led to the passing of Canadian musician Gord Downey in 2017. “Chopper’ as he is known by his friends, was given one year to live but he’s maintained his fight for three years. “Unfortunately, his last M.R.I. showed that his cancer is still growing despite treatment,” says his wife Estelize. She adds Ryan has exhausted all treatment options available under the BC Medical Services Plan.
However, the family has discovered a clinical treatment study in Arizona that offers promise. “Ryan’s cancer shows that he has all of the biomarkers or characteristics that they are looking for,” says Estelize. That suggests the program could be effective in fighting the cancer.
The study will include another brain surgery and several more M.R.I. scans at the Ivy Brain Tumor Center in Phoenix. But the family will be on the hook for the costs.
A page on the fundraising website ‘Go Fund Me’ has been established by the family. It has a goal of $200,000. It surpassed the $100,000 mark November 10th. The money will be used to pay treatment costs, which are not covered through the BC Medical Services Plan.
The family is also hosting a fundraiser at the Legacy Sports Centre in Abbotsford Friday, December 6th. The evening will include some music, drinks and a silent auction. Tickets are $50 and available through Eventbrite under the name ‘Chopperfest 2019.’ All proceeds from the evening will be used to support the costs of medical treatment for Masales.
Ryan began working as a police officer with the Vancouver Police Department in 2001 before moving to the Abbotsford Police Department in 2010. “He is my best friend,” says Estelize. “He is an amazing father to our 7 year old son Ryder.”
A friend of the family has produced a short video to raise awareness around the story of the Masales family. Video Credit: Dave Benedict