Heartwarming support for Thomases

Published 10:02 pm Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Back in June, many people in Suffolk, Colorado and across the country came together to help the Thomas family when they went through an unimaginable circumstance.

Marshall Thomas and his family — parents and five siblings — had enjoyed a cruise to Alaska. But as they traveled back to Suffolk, Marshall started feeling sicker and sicker, eventually collapsing in the airport in Denver.

Nearly a whole continent from home, the family learned Marshall had pre-B acute lymphoblastic leukemia in addition to serious infections in his blood and lungs. He would have to be hospitalized in Colorado for weeks before he was able to travel home.

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An online movement to help the family find temporary housing in Colorado was successful, and the family received other support as well.

Although doctors had to wait to begin his chemotherapy until the infections cleared up, Marshall was able to return to Suffolk late last month and is into his second phase of treatment. Overall, his treatment will last for more than three years. He is trying to be as active as possible, as he feels better when he moves more.

The internet and social media have created a lot of ills in society. They can be used to sow discord, provoke hate and intolerance, steal privacy and even manipulate emotions. Overuse can cause all sorts of physical, emotional and intellectual problems.

But the story of the support the Thomas family got is a good example of how this technology can be used for good, as well. It may not have been possible without it.

We are thrilled that the Suffolk community once again came together — albeit online, to help a local family stranded many miles away — in the way we see time and again that it can. And we’re thrilled that Marshall is on his way back to full health.