11 March 2002
After four grueling months of intense training, the men of Detachment 1, 2-116th Cavalry departed for Bosnia, minus one.
TEAM COBRA DEPARTS FOR BOSNIA -
MINUS ITS COACH
After four grueling months of intense training, the men of Detachment 1, 2-116th Cavalry departed for Bosnia, minus one. Five days before, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. At the very last minute, another sergeant had to replace me on the deployment, and I was uncertain as to Team Cobra's future. Fortunately, SPC Nic "Littleman" Fischer has taken it upon himself to oversee Team Cobra's progress during the Bosnia rotation.
As for myself, it wasn't until after the team left that I found out how serious my situation was. What I had is called Acoustic Neuroma, which is a benign tumor that grows off the balance nerves of the brain. Though benign, acoustic neuromas can still be fatal. The real danger lies in its proximity to the facial and audio nerves of the brain. In roughly 75% of the cases, the patient suffers permanent hearing loss, and also has a high risk of losing all control over that side of the face. The chances of fatality during the procedure are also there as well.
29 April 2002
SGT MACE RECOVERING FROM BRAIN SURGERY-
"I WILL RETURN!"
On April 10th, I was admitted to St Alphonses in Boise for surgery. Doctors Timothy Johans and Delray Maughns spent nearly four hours operating, and the results were nothing short of miraculous. Both my facial and audio nerves were saved, though both were severely traumatized. As of 29 April, I can hear almost nothing out of my left ear, and have little control over the left side of my face. However, I have been reassured that both will recover in time. My balance has returned and as of 24 April, I have been able to start bodybuilding again. I thank God every day for the outcome of my surgery. I have dropped from 225 to 210 pounds since the operation. My intent is to cut my body fat down to roughly 10%, then to start mass building again. I hope by the end of this summer to be a hard chiseled 225-230 pounds.
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