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Son of Andrew & Nancy Nelson, born in Fresno, CA, grew up in New York and now calls Stonington, IL, his home. Luke graduated from Taylorville High School in 2009, went to technical school, worked at Monsanto and Pro Shot, before getting a job as a Crane Operator and Apprentice Welder. Life was moving along and Luke had many hopes and dreams. He enjoyed hanging out with his friends, going to the movies, working out at the gym, bike riding with his sister on the trail to Pana, camping and hiking. Then, at twenty-three years old, life as he knew it drastically changed.

Updates (40)

April 19, 2017


We went to Chicago last week for Luke’s 6th month follow up MRI and Dr visits. His MRI showed no new lesions and some lesions are even shrinking.

Both doctors were very pleased with Luke’s progress. They did remind us how important this 1st year of recovery is after HSCT and that he will not get the full affects for 5 years. It will just be constant improvement as long as he does not get any infections.

All his blood work came back good and even his EDSS score lowered. The trip itself was exhausting for Luke and when we returned home Bären did not let Luke out of his sight.

We go back in September for his 1 year anniversary check up.

December 10, 2016

This will be my last update for 2016. I wanted to do it on the 6th, because that was Luke’s 3 month mark from his HSCT, but life is still crazy busy here and I missed it.

Luke just was not doing well at PT. Seemed like a waste of time. So his nurse and I had a long talk on how to get him up and moving, along with what to do about his depression. Though technically he is not suppose to be around new or strange pets, we decided that the pros out weighed the cons on him getting his own dog.

I prayed so hard about this, because a dog coming into this house had to get along with Jax (Irish Wolfhound the size of a small pony) and 5 cats. Well on November 11th we went to the local shelter with Jax in tow, to look at a boxer/lab mix and she was not right. Long story short, Luke picked a wonderful Australian Blue Healer cattle dog (even has the partial blue eye). Sadly someone lost a wonderful dog, Luke’s gain!

His name is Baren (German for bear). He has become Luke’s best friend. They are together all the time. Baren has learned quickly the cats are off limits haha, and he and Jax are becoming buddies. But best of all he has helped with Luke’s depression and is getting Luke up and moving. Baren will play fetch forever if allowed to, is well trained on or off a leash and is now very protective of Luke. So when Luke starts the transition to living alone again, I feel much better knowing that Baren will be there to help.

So though Luke is not doing as well as he was after first being released from the hospital (all normal), he is at least still out of the wheelchair, sight is improved (not sure how much) and his cognitive abilities are returning.

Please continue to pray about his SSDI, which now has been moved to July 2017.

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year. Again thank you for all your support. Its been a tough few years, but I know good things are on there way!

Photos of he and Baren in the files!


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September 5, 2016

Sending love and strength. Lean on your family and friends when you can. Praying for Luke.


September 5, 2016

Please know my thoughts are with you daily! Luke-your amazing! Knowing your mom the way I do-I see why you are. She's strength. She's love. Shes your rock. We would all take this for you if we could. Nancy- my dear friend since high school. Please look to God with every breath. May He wrap his armor around you all and carry you through this. I love you dear friend. Hugs, prayers & love to all!

Tami Fridley

August 1, 2016

Such great news Nancy. I have been following your story about Luke. I love seeing the updates about the positive signs your family is going through. I did the donation because you are an inspiration to me. Keep moving forward. I will be praying for Luke. Big Hugs to you. I love your strength.

Mary Deaner Brewer - Fresno, CA

July 30, 2016

Love you guys!!!! Looking forward to the videos....if it's not too crazy

Jana Banana