PLATTSBURGH — Tausha Henry is thankful to have a sister like Stephanie Boardman.
Henry, 27, suffers from mesial temporal lobe sclerosis due to a lifelong seizure disorder.
Her epileptic seizures are not controllable by medication; they are so severe that they affect her memory and motor skills.
“Eventually, she will not remember us,” her sister said.
Henry is preparing for a temporal lobectomy that she hopes will improve her condition.
According to epilepsy.com, that surgery involves removing of a portion of the temporal lobe of the brain to eliminate the most severe types of seizures.
It has a success rate of 60 to 70 percent, the website says.
Henry, who lives in Massena, also has femoral tumors and has been diagnosed with cancer.
All this has led to expenses for transportation and medical supplies that insurance does not cover. As well, she very much would like an epileptic-response service dog to aid her in daily life.
And so Boardman stepped in.
“My sister, out of nowhere, started this fundraiser to help me,” Henry said.
The Plattsburgh woman launched a nonprofit, called Last Hope for Tausha — taking care of all the paperwork, putting containers for donations at locations around Plattsburgh and contacting local businesses for support.
“I’ve done two bottle drives at the Miller Street Redemption Center,” Boardman said.
Next comes the Spaghetti Dinner Benefit for Tausha, set for 1 p.m. Sunday at the West Plattsburgh American Legion. The event will also include a 50/50 raffle and a silent auction.
Boardman said that many local businesses have made donations and are helping with the dinner and the auction.
Among them are Kinney Drugs, Texas Roadhouse, the Butcher Block and Plattsburgh Distributing.
The North Country Cancer Fund has made a donation.
And, Boardman said, “Dawn and Kevin Morrow, owners of Morrow’s Store, have been so supportive.
“I’m very grateful for all the things everyone’s done.”
She hopes the Spaghetti Dinner Benefit will be well-attended.
“I just want people to know how important it is to come on down for a good cause. It’s for (Tausha) and for her son, too.”
Henry is the mother of a 4-year old boy, Isaiah.
Boardman hopes the fundraising will also allow her sister to get a service dog, which can be trained to assist in many ways, both physically and emotionally.
“If she was alone and had a seizure, and the dog was with her, the dog could get help.”
But because of the required training, the cost for such a dog can be as high as $8,000, she said.
For her part, Henry is amazed by all that her sister is doing to help her.
“At the same time she’s doing this, she’s raising her own children and dealing with celiac disease.
“I just want everybody to know what a wonderful sister she’s being.
“I love her very much.”
HOW TO HELP
To contribute to the fund for Tausha Henry, reach Stephanie Boardman at 335-6868 or mail checks to: Last Hope for Tausha, 24 Tiffany Way, Plattsburgh, NY 12901.