Fundraiser for ailing softball coach
It’s “Do or Die” time in a very literal sense for former Copper Hills assistant softball coach Cami Carter. The 31-year-old is in the battle of her life with an undiagnosed respiratory illness that has gradually taken over her body the past two years.
A fundraising campaign is being held to raise $25,000 for a series of Bronchial Thermoplasty lung treatments for Carter that are considered experimental – and, therefore, not covered by her medical insurance.
“This is it for me,” Carter said. “These treatments are my hope to get my health and my life back.”
“Cami has been a best friend of mine for many years,” CHHS head coach Jentry Johnson said. “She is someone I have looked up to in the softball world and in life. We at Copper Hills are doing all that we can to help raise funds for her.”
The former softball pitcher for Alta, Salt Lake Community College and Oklahoma State University began feeling sick over two years ago and was hospitalized in the intensive care unit with respiratory problems. Since then, she has spent over 100 days in the hospital with declining health. She is unable to work or drive and is completely dependent on oxygen. “It takes everything out of you,” she said.
Carter’s physician has told her that it is 18 times harder for her to breathe than a normal person. Currently, she takes 16 medications on a daily basis and also deals with a chronic cough. She has been treated with high doses of steroids that are causing her bones to become brittle – she’s broken two ribs from coughing – and producing a significant weight gain.
“This has really put into perspective how much I’ve just always taken my health for granted,” Carter said. “And it has made me so grateful for the good days.”
Carter said it has been so difficult to see the stress this has put on her parents but she has tried to remain positive in the midst of this life-altering and life-threatening challenge. “I have been so grateful and humbled by all the support, love and prayers so many have offered me,” she said. “It’s been amazing.”
Those interested in donating can visit http://www.giveforward.com/livelungandprosper. To date, $9,712 has been raised.