Join Craig’s Relay For Life Team

Hi everyone,

Thank you for checking in, it’s been a long while since the last update. If you are visiting for the first time then you may already know that Craig passed away at the end of last Summer. Not a day goes by that The Brandmeier Family does not think of our sweet Craig. We are truly missing him, all the time, and we are so grateful for the time we had with him on this earth. Each day we live our lives in honor of this brave man, son, brother, husband and friend and we also do this by raising support for the American Cancer Society through the Relay For Life.

Please check out Team Craig for info on raising support for and participating in the Dana Point, CA Relay For Life Event on October 1st-2nd, 2011. Join Team Craig and donate as little as $5 to help us reach our goal of raising $15,000 for the American Cancer Society.

Also, it was always Craig’s wish to spread the word about the need for registered bone marrow donors and/or cord blood donors. It is a thing many people do not understand, as it is not the same as blood donation and not nearly as frightening as TV and the movies make it out to be. Please visit Be The Match to find out how you could be a someone’s one and only match, and could save the life of someone like Craig.

Thank you a thousand times over for the care and support you’ve all shown, whether you’ve been with us from the beginning, or you’ve just seen Craig’s True Life episode and felt that his story reached out to you. Craig certainly had that affect, and he’ll never be forgotten!

Kat and The Brandmeiers

Life Without Craig

It’s been a little over two weeks since Craig passed away. He took his last breaths on the morning of August 28th, but it still feels like yesterday. Family has gone back home to Ca, except for Gary who has been nice enough to stay put for a couple of weeks to soften the blow of a quiet house. Because we already had a big celebration with Craig in Dana Point, we didn’t have another memorial down in Cali, but last night my friends in Portland threw a really amazing ‘happy hour’ memorial for Craig and his brothers Mike and Gary were able to be part of it.

I can’t fully express the gratitude the Brandmeier Family has for everyone who has taken the time to follow our story, send encouragement, and make a difference in the world by spreading Leukemia awareness and becoming part of the national marrow registry. With what little time Craig was given on this earth, he worked until the end and never stopped laughing, loving and being kind. We are so proud of him!

In honor of Craig, please continue to help these causes:

THE AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY- Relay For Life Dana Point, Oct. 2-3, 2010
Join Team Craig– sign up, show up, donate, and/or raise donations!

BE THE MATCH – National Marrow Donor Program
Save A Life– grow the registry, become a registered donor, support financially!

Make September a Blood Cancer Awareness Month– be in the know about blood cancers, donate, take action!

No young adult survivor alone. Ever.– got cancer? under 40? sucks, huh?

If nothing else, donate some blood or platelets!– patients with blood diseases like Craig need lots of transfusions. Please help us give back!

Rest in peace, Craig.

Saying goodbye

By tomorrow, all the family will be here by Craig’s side at the hospital. His condition has worsened in the last couple of days, as he is no longer eating, drinking or interacting much. The doctors said it may be a day or two, and so we are preparing for the moment Craig’s spirit will be freed from his broken body and he will be with his Maker. Right now he is on a constant drip of pain medicine, and he is sleeping pretty peacefully.
Not much else to say. We are all heartbroken and also ready for this suffering to end. May the Lord wrap his gentle arms around Craig as he rests.
The Brandmeiers

Waiting for relief…

Since our last update, we decided, with the doctor’s help, to go ahead with another round of chemo. The purpose of this would be to slow down the progression of Craig’s leukemia and possibly give him a little more time. Right before we began treatment, Craig started experiencing a lot of pain and bloating in his abdomen and so he was admitted to the hospital to figure out what was going on. CT scans showed the leukemia has grown in spots on his liver, lower lungs, and intestines among a few other places. This is the cause of all kinds of pain and breathing issues, as there is a lot of pressure in his belly and some fluid in his lungs. They decided to proceed with the chemo, in hopes that it might have an effect on the growths and ease his pain. He just finished his last dose yesterday (it was a 5-day round). It may take a few more days for us to see any improvement.

Craig has been reunited with his “buddy,” the button that self-administers pain meds from a pump. He is also on oxygen to help him with his breathing. Judy and Brad have been up here with us for the last week and plan to stay until this weekend. Today we are discussing a game plan for coming home from the hospital. We will be needing a lot of support for care at home with the amount of pain and complications Craig is having, and hospice may be the best option for us at this point. This does not mean we cannot continue treatments in the future- it only means we will have a great resource for help and comfort at home right now. We are hoping to bring him home tonight at the earliest, but most likely tomorrow.

Love you all,

P.S. Team Craig T-Shirts are now available! They can be purchased through email at Our friends designed and made these shirts, and the proceeds will go towards our medical bills! Each shirt is $20.00 plus a $5.00 shipping fee. Send an email with your shirt request. (Quantity, Size, Shipping Address, Name, Phone Number) Once your request is received, they will ask you to send a check made payable to Meagan Ellena at:
8502 E. Chapman #615
Orange, Ca 92867

You’ll get an email when your shirt has shipped! The shirt has Craig’s motto ‘Relentless’ on the front and ‘Team Craig’ on the back.

Still fighting!

We had a beautiful celebration of life party on Saturday, a mixture of friends family and loved ones. It was a day not to focus on death and the sadness of the illness but a day to focus on the the positive on the good I have done and the joy I have brought to this world. We arrived in California on Friday – me feeling very ill and sick, not eating. After a few days and our wonderful stay at the Montage Hotel in Laguna Beach, I finally started feeling a little better.

We were given a wonderful vacation at the Montage by an amazing friend of my parents, as well as the General Manager of sales for the hotel. We had a great great time and enjoyed every bit of it (other then the fire alarm going off at 4:00 am hehe) We enjoyed time by the pool and room service as well as a gigantic tub, (let me remind you I haven’t been in a tub in years because of all the lines I have had in my arms/chest)

We are getting ready for our trip back home to Portland Oregon Sunday, we will be leaving early morning! We are very excited to get home to see our Puppy – aka our son. On Tuesday I will be having another Cat-Scan to see how the bumps are growing and how fast. We will then discuss treatment options on Thursday with the Doctor.

I do want to say thanks to everyone that came to the party on Saturday as well as everyone that has been there for us has thought about us has donated to us or who has just given me my family and or Kat a hug/kiss. WE WILL NEVER FORGET.

Watch me Broadcast each night at 9:00 pm Pacific time, This is where you can watch me live, I talk about my fight with cancer and what it is like to become a Bone Marrow Donor, as well as it gives me great pleasure to make you all laugh and smile! So please tune in I am not sure how many more of these will be left. Visit

Become a Bone Marrow Donor
First visit – read all the FAQ and get familiar with what the donation process is like.
Click register or sign up to become a donor.
When it prompts you for a promo code enter in TRUELIFE2010 – this will sign you up under my name as well as it will waive the 52 dollar sign up fee. If you are able to donate any amount to this non-profit organization, it really helps with all the cost involved with testing and typing for these kits.

The end is coming! :(

Well we have known for some time now and I have posted it on my facebook and so forth, but the doctors have told us that no more rounds of chemo are going to work and will only make things worse for me. They give me anywhere from a week to 3 months to live, this has devastated our family and has been very hard on all of us. I don’t feel that I am giving up and truly felt I have lived a great life and supported people going through the same thing. Kat will continue to live in Portland after I pass away she will be working a new job and and I hope to get a new house or apartment that will be closer to her work as well as her friends. Please consider donating, any amount will do and will go towards helping Kat with the medical bills and her future.

I only ask from everyone that know’s Kat and my family that you continue to support them and be there for them, call them, hug them and just tell them you love them. They will need this support from all you people for awhile, so please help me help them.

I may be allowed to go home tomorrow so that is some good news, but we are just waiting to see how counts look tonight and if I pop a fever over the night. They will send me home with lots of pain medications as well as antibiotics.

Become a Bone Marrow Donor
First visit – read all the FAQ and get familiar with what the donation process is like.
Click register or sign up to become a donor.
When it prompts you for a promo code enter in TRUELIFE2010 – this will sign you up under my name as well as it will waive the 52 dollar sign up fee. If you are able to donate any amount to this non-profit organization, it really helps with all the cost involved with testing and typing for these kits.

I am still broadcasting a live webcam from my house so you can tune in around 7:00 pm, visit to visit me live!

Lots of love and support to you all, Please if you have money to spare please click donate. The money will go towards Kat so that she can pay off some of the bills that I will leave her behind. Thanks everyone!

Hello to all the new people!

Well my episode re-aired today with the updated ending telling people about my current condition. If you are visiting this site for the first time, there is a link right below this blog that says view all older blogs, and you can go back from when I was first diagnosed and read all the posts about news and updates on my condition.

I am currently in the hospital and every night I have been broadcasting a feed where I answer questions and talk about life with cancer, so if you are up late feel free to tune in for and chat it up or just watch me be a goof on the webcam. I usually air at 9:00 pm Pacific time on – When I go live, I post a message in my status on facebook so feel free to add me as a facebook friend as well, the link to my facebook account is at the top of the page.

If you are interested in becoming a donor and saving someone’s life, please follow these instructions and become a life saving donor!

First visit – read all the FAQ and get familiar with what the donation process is like.
Click register or sign up to become a donor.
When it prompts you for a promo code enter in TRUELIFE2010 – this will sign you up under my name as well as it will waive the 52 dollar sign up fee. If you are able to donate any amount to this non-profit organization, it really helps with all the cost involved with testing and typing for these kits.

I encourage everyone to become a donor and save some lives! To read the latest news about my condition, view my last blog that I posted and previous ones. Please come and say hi on and ask some questions during the broadcast tonight, and feel free to add me as a facebook friend!

Thanks for all the love and support, and a special thanks to Numerosign for designing and maintaining this blog for me!

Bad news always sucks.

A set of three doctors walked into my room this morning – the look on there face (not good) The doctors proceeded to tell me that the lump’s I have had in the past have worked there way into the stomach and chest in areas where radiation and/or surgery is not possible – I was devastated. Before I really could take in all of what they were telling me I started asking questions. I asked if there was ANY way at all they they could treat these lumps and make them go away… They did say that maybe a different type of chemo could do the trick but they aren’t 100% sure. As they left the room I could not control the tears and pain from what I was just told, It was like a slap in the face and then some.

My main Dr. will be back in the hospital tomorrow and he will give it to me straight and tell me what we can do.

So yup this sucks, but I keep on staying positive and ready for what’s ready in the future. I am willing to whatever it takes to kill this stuff.



Home for 4 days back in hospital! Ugh

Well I finished my round of 6 days of chemotherapy and was able to go home on July 4th which was nice considering I was in the hospital for the last 4th. I started radiation on the 6th and will go till this coming Friday, so a total of 9 days. I think between the chemotherapy and radiation I have been very tired and week but overall feel ok.

We asked my mom to come up on Thursday to help out since daily activities like driving to the clinic and the everyday radiation is a little tough on me while Kats working. When she got here Thursday night I popped a fever and spent about 14 hours in the ER waiting for a room. So far I haven’t popped another fever but one of my blood cultures did show I had an infection, so they have started antibiotics and sounds like they will stop them tomorrow Sunday to see if I pop any fevers without them before they send me home hopefully on Monday!

So next week 5 more days of radiation and then waiting for my counts to come back up. Then probably another bone marrow biopsy to see what the status is of the cancer in the bone marrow, and then talks about the next transplant.

Thanks for the continued love and support.

Round… Who knows, let’s get er done!

I was admitted into the hospital yesterday the 29th. This is to undergo another round of chemotherapy and then after the chemotherapy I will receive 10 days of radiation to the bump on my chest, I have a appointment with radiology to get everything setup for that tomorrow. So far the hospital life has been ok, Kat visits me for a few house a day but has to get back to the puppy and then starting next week will be at work.

Once we get done with chemo and I recover we will then talk about transplant options. The insurance company has already approved the next transplant so that is great news!

If you are interested in visiting or saying hi send me a facebook or call/text me, I would love to have the visitors as long as you are not sick.

<3 ya all