CHICAGO (CBS) – A suburban doctor goes to Haiti to do humanitarian work and brings back a father in desperate need of surgery. He not only arranges the surgery, but invites the man to live with him and his family, while he recovers. CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot reports.
“I pray (to) God every day. I think God can help,” said Marcel Faugue.
Faugue says for five years he watched as a small bump on top of his head grew to the size of a small orange. He also suffered from seizures. Doctors in his native Port-au-Prince told him he had a tumor.
“The doctor said to me, he can’t do anything for me,” Faugue said.
Several months ago, Faugue was visiting a friend at a tent hospital in Port-au-Prince. During a visit, he removed his hat, revealing the tumor.
“That’s when we saw this growth on his skull,” said Dr. Frank Weschler of NorthShore University HealthSystem.
“Jody said to me, ‘we have to do something,’” he said.
What Jody Weschler and her husband, Dr. Frank Weschler, did, was take action to help a total stranger.
Jody, a practicing nurse, and Weschler, had been doing humanitarian work in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
Jody contacted the State Department to arrange a humanitarian visa.
Dr. Weschler called his colleague, neurosurgeon Dr. Egon Doppenberg at NorthShore University HealthSystem.
Six months later, Faugue, is tumor-free.
“This is as tough as they get, these type of tumors, for several reasons,” Dr. Doppenberg said.
Dr. Doppenberg and a team of doctors, worked for eight hours, to remove the benign tumor. It had not only eroded into Faugue’s skull, but had grown into his brain and attached itself to his blood vessels, scalp and skull.
The father of three had moved into the Weschlers North Shore home prior to his surgery. He developed a bond with their children, even teaching them French, while they taught him English.
“I’ve known that they’ve done something good, all the time, but knowing that I was a part of it, was really uplifting,” said the couple’s son, Ed Weschler.
Faugue says he has no idea how to thank the Weschlers.
“’Thanks’ is not enough,” he said.
“I always feel like I should thank him, as he’s really given our family just a lot,” said Jody Weschler, holding back tears.
The Weschlers raised more than $40,000 to cover Faugue’s medical costs.
The team of doctors from NorthShore University HealthSystem donated their time to perform the surgery.
Faugue leaves for Haiti this weekend, and hopes to return to his job at the Japanese Embassy, where he works as a security guard.
The NorthShore University HealthSystem Neurological Institute team that was instrumental in Marcel Faugue’s care is as follows:
Dr. Frank Weschler, internist
Dr. Nina Paleologos, neuro-oncologist
Dr. Egon Doppenberg, neurosurgeon
Dr. Michael Howard, plastic surgeon
Dr. Karol Gutowski, plastic surgeon
Dr. James Perkins, blood bank/transfusionist
Dr. Rebecca Blumenthal, anesthesiologist
Dr. Steven Greenberg, anesthesiologist/critical care
Dr. Miledones Eliades, physical medicine and rehabilitation
Dr. Ranjeev Nanda, radiation oncology
Dr. Robert Goldschmidt, chief pathologist
In addition to numerous radiology staff that helped in reading multiple radiologic reports.