I don’t know this guy, but he and I have the same name (which is kind of cool and weirding me out at the same time) and he is doing something that deserves some publicity. Here is a link to a Facebook page about his event and a copied/pasted/gently-edited synopsis:
[This other] Matthew Helmke was born and raised in Nevada, a proud Navy Veteran, having served our country in the Gulf War and now a cancer survivor. Last September, at the age of 35, he was diagnosed with Central Nervous System Lymphoma….brain cancer. After immediately having surgery to remove the cancer he began a grueling in hospital chemo. Every other Tuesday he spent 5 days inpatient at the Huntsman Cancer Institute in Salt Lake City receiving treatment. Just 3 months after his last chemo, he walked over 20 miles in his first “Relay for Life”. He wants to help others know that you can get better and step forward. He just passed the one year anniversary of his diagnosis. To mark this bittersweet occasion, he is walking more than 450 miles across the state of Nevada. Today alone he walked 35 miles with a 45 lb pack. I am trying to get his message out there to raise awareness, and provide encouragement for others on the same journey. He is truly an inspiration to those battling with cancer.
For those wondering, I was born and raised in Arizona and am in perfect health. Reading this story reminded me of the fragility of our humanity. Reading about my name-sharer’s persistence and fight to live is inspiring. Best wishes, Matt!