I am sad to say that I woke up this morning and read that Chase Gouin is very sick.
The open letter below was written by Brandon Fenton and can be found on Global-Flat (http://www.global-flat.com/smf/index.php?topic=49493).
If you can help in any way please do. Although the Flatland community is a small one I am sure that we can come together to aid a fellow rider and someone that helped define modern Flatland.
Donations may be sent via PayPal to the following address: email@example.com
Get well soon Chase.
This letter is to inform you of Chase Gouin’s battle against illness and his current health condition. On December 12, 2009, Chase woke up with a severe headache and was feeling ill. For the next fifteen months he saw more than twenty different Doctors and Specialists who did every kind of traditional test and scan that they believed to be relevant and yet they found nothing that they could diagnose. At one point during that time, Chase decided to move out of his basement apartment and discovered what appeared to be mold in two locations in his bedroom, one being in the wall merely three feet from the head of his bed. Petri dish lab results confirmed three types of mold that are known to be pathogenic to humans under conditions like the ones he was living in (i.e. an old building basement with poor ventilation).
He soon began to suspect that his illness might have been caused by the prolonged close proximity and breathing in of mold spores. A Naturopathic Doctor ordered an advanced DNA based stool sample analysis that he sent to a high tech lab in Georgia. The results confirmed much more and worse than he expected. Results showed the highest possible concentration rating of yeast/fungal overgrowth throughout his body; in the cells, tissues, and bloodstream. A parasite was also found, that may be from the exactly numerous mosquito bites he received one night on an island in Panama in November, 2008. The yeast/fungi and parasite consume most of his fat soluble vitamins which causes a mal absorption disease. The constant and relentless symptoms that Chase has been suffering with include a toxic feeling headache, a cracking kind of facial pressure/pain, numerous sinus issues, tearing goopy eyes, chronic fatigue/weakness, debilitating lethargy, and others. These kinds of infestations can and have resulted in cognitive impairment, memory loss, lack of concentration and disorientation. The immune system also becomes severely weakened and goes into a hyper defense mode which causes multiple environmental chemical sensitivities along with food allergies and devastating reactions to many typically harmless substances that have had him bed ridden for days and even weeks at a time.
The suffering he has endured along with the apathy, denial, and lies he has encountered in the health care system have put him in a desperate situation in which he is racing to find real answers and a cure. Ninety five percent of what he has discovered has been through his own research while enduring the host of symptoms listed above, he barely props himself up at the computer, makes phone calls and writes letters, all of which are only possibly due to the minor relief provided by taking prescription pain killers and sedatives. He has been on a restricted diet of no yeast or sugar, as well as a custom protocol of anti-fungal and anti-parasitic supplements. For over a year now he has lived in a new apartment with all laminate flooring (can’t have carpeting), with an expensive air purifier, all natural household cleaning products, spotless living quarters, and he must bring a medical mask with him everywhere he goes. Nothing has yet changed or improved his health in any way.
He thought it was good news when he got the diagnosis five months ago, but it turns out that most modern western Doctors are not educated in the types of diseases Chase is dealing with. Because of this they are actually known as “the quiet epidemics”. Even an infectious disease Specialist was not familiar with the lab results or methodology used, and she did not accept his plus four fungal overgrowth rating. She ordered blood tests unrelated to evidence he presented to her and ordered him to do three more inferior culture based stool tests which he had already done and which failed to detect what is there. He even printed out information from the Metametrix lab and submitted it to the I.D. Specialist in an attempt to inform her. It has been a struggle trying to convince and educate the Doctors so that they can help him. Many of these encounters have left him feeling that such efforts have been utterly futile and that the health system is severely broken.
The pain medication he is on is interfering with the metabolizing of the food he eats and supplements he takes which renders them ineffective but, he needs the meds simply to function and to continue the mission to save his own life. Besides that, the side effects and withdrawal symptoms of the pain meds makes it difficult to decipher the real pain from the symptoms of his disease, so it is difficult to determine if he is making any progress.
What he needs to do is find what’s called an integrated Medical Doctor who knows about these diseases and how to treat them aggressively and successfully, which may require heavy duty intravenous medications. He is currently in debt due to all the medical costs not covered by the Ontario Health Insurance Plan and unable to effectively pursue a solution to his condition. He cannot even try to ride or exercise because if he does in this weakened state his symptoms become ten times worse. For a high-level professional athlete known for his aggressive and intense riding style, not being able to ride or be active at all for the past fifteen months has taken a serious toll on his physical fitness and emotional well-being. In the face of these extreme obstacles Chase is holding out hope that he may find some real help soon to eradicate these insidious infections, and get back to the love of his life…riding.
Chase has brought so much to the world of flatland and BMX in general. He has inspired many and he has been dedicated to pushing his own limits of potential. He has also been encouraging and helped others to do and be their best. More than that, he has been a true friend and a genuine person. He has been a flatland icon for many years, helping flatland to stay alive in its lowest points. Now I am sincerely asking you to help Chase stay alive through what is no doubt his lowest point. With your help, Chase can continue to pursue the additional medical attention he needs to try and conquer his debilitating condition. The Athlete Recovery Fund has agreed to financially assist Chase towards his cause, but he cannot depend on that as the only source for help, so that is why we need your help. We ask that you please donate to Chase’s recovery fund today. Please give anything that you can so that we can help to get Chase to return to good health and hopefully one day he will be able to get back on his bike and be that amazing rider we all know him to be.
Donations may be sent via paypal to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Chase’s close personal friend Ryan Quinn has set up the paypal account on Chase’s behalf since Chase doesn’t have a credit card. So don’t be alarmed if Ryan’s name shows up on your paypal receipt. All of your donations are going directly to supporting Chase’s recovery mission.