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Be The One: Meet Michael!

By December 15, 2015February 28th, 2024Awareness, NF1, Story of NF, Ways to Give

This time of year, folks all over the world are making their lists and checking them twice. In addition to new toys, fun games and socks (well, maybe not socks!), our NF heroes have additional hopes: less chemotherapy, fewer doctors’ appointments, reduced tumor size. At the Children’s Tumor Foundation, we are working relentlessly to fulfill that hope.

When you join the fight to end NF, you are ensuring that those living with NF are closer to a cure. We asked some NF heroes to share their story and their hopes for the coming year.

“My husband, Michael, is an amazing guy. He is 58 and was diagnosed with NF1 at age seven. His mother also had neurofibromatosis. He was in special education classes and suffered constant bullying as a teen, but he loves everybody and greets the world with a smile every day.

“Michael attended Glendale College and California State University at Los Angeles. He became a teacher and taught special education for 17 years. In recent years, he mainly taught as a substitute in middle school grades.

“We met in 2011, married in 2014, and, along with his daughter who is now 25, became a family.

“Michael loves to paint and make sculptures from repurposed items. We want to donate some art to the Children’s Tumor Foundation one day. He loves caring for our pets, Teddy the Havanese dog and Bea our ragdoll cat, and he enjoys cooking.

“Michael gives his heart unconditionally as a wonderful father and spouse. He is my hero and I am so grateful to share my life with him.”

What advice do you have for others facing similar challenges?
“I have only been with my husband for five of his 58 years. The bullying, isolation, and horrible experiences he has had to endure when he was a child and teenager should never happen to anyone. My advice is to help others to feel included, be kind, and to bring awareness of NF and its mental struggles to others so they know how to be of help.”

What’s a success or accomplishment you’re really proud of that happened this year?
“Michael put his art in an exhibit three months after we moved to Las Vegas and he networked with other artists. He is always cheerful and making new friends but the art show was a boost to his confidence.”

What are you most looking forward to in 2016?
“Michael hopes to work with the special needs population here in Las Vegas. He used to work for Jay Nolan Associates in Mission Hills, California as a job coach.”

What’s one song that you never skip on your playlist?
“Anything by Neil Young, Michael is a huge fan. We have tickets to see him play in a few weeks!”


In your own unique way, you can make a difference in the lives of the millions of people worldwide with NF.
Be the one to step up, to make a gift, to educate others… and to play a critical role in the mission to end NF.
Click here and Be The One