Ian has been battling osteosarcoma (bone cancer) since April of 2015. It started with a bump on his shin that when removed was discovered to be malignant. After amputating his leg in June of 2015 and 8 grueling months of chemotherapy he was declared NED (no evidence of disease). But sadly 6 months later doctors found a new tumor at the base of his spine in his sacrum. Experimental therapies at Cleveland Clinic used radium to blast the tumor from the inside out giving him another amazing year and a half before passing away due to complications from treatment-induced AML leukemia. Throughout this journey, Ian has truly lived his life fully — “If I can stand, I can climb."
Osteosarcoma is a rare and aggressive cancer that is notoriously difficult to treat. Due to the rarity and inherent differences from other cancers research is sparse. There hasn't been any change in first line treatment for osteosarcoma in over 30 years. A group of parents and survivors of osteosarcoma decided to work to change the lack of research and treatment options for osteosarcoma. This group of dedicated patient advocates formed MIB (Make It Better) Agents and hosted the first ever osteosarcoma conference in February 2017. The name is the Osteosarcoma Alliance FACTOR conference, FACTOR stands for fundraising, awareness, collaboration, trials and osteosarcoma research. Over 50 doctors and scientists attending with at least the same number of patients and caregivers. The goal is to begin meaningful collaboration between scientists and patient advocates while raising funds and awareness for new trials and treatment options. In addition to solely focused on Osteosarcoma, what makes the MIB (Make It Better) Agents unique is that research funds are awarded in a VC-style process where only the best ideas get funded and approved by our scientific board.
When asked where he would like TEAM IAN fundraising efforts to be focused. Ian wanted fundraising to go toward further research so that we can OBLITERATE osteosarcoma.
UPDATE: Our Agent Logo, like many OsteoWarriors, has gone from a limb salvage leg to amputation. His prosthetic leg is a representation of OsteoAngel Ian’s leg. Ian, while mightily battling Osteosarcoma went to college to learn how to make prosthetics better for amputees. Ian was an excellent example of who Agents are and what they do. Along with this change, are a few other tweaks you may notice, and some same-as-always details.
The Agent is moving forward always, with the fortitude and purpose that all OsteoWarriors do. Agent has a gold cape to represent childhood cancer and osteosarcoma. The cape has wind beneath it to show movement. Agent’s face is featureless for two reasons - 1. He is all of us, regardless of race. and 2. MIB undertakes many undercover missions that we do not share or speak of to Make It Better. The new logo also says “Osteosarcoma”. We do all of this with you - Agents everywhere!
The Mission of M.I.B. Agents is to Make It Better for children with osteosarcoma, bone cancer. With love and hope, M.I.B. Agents:
- Pairs a child in treatment with a survivor of their same cancer including through MiB Gamer Agents.
- Provides items of comfort and entertainment (iPads, iTunes Cards, Noise Cancelling Headphones) for their treatment and recovery
- Arranges end-of-life experiences and/or comfort for the child when options for treatment have been exhausted and they are on home hospice care.
- Raises funds and awareness to increase research for better treatments and outcomes for those with osteosarcoma, including through the first osteosarcoma conference FACTOR and through our annual $100,000 funding initiative, OutSmarting Osteosarcoma.
M.I.B. Agents makes it better by helping to increase the quality of comfort and life for kids with osteosarcoma with the help of our community of dedicated and passionate Agents.
We are committed to Making it Better for adolescents and young adults with bone cancer (osteosarcoma). Our dedicated team pays no salaries, so your donation has a profound and direct effect on our missions.
A receipt will be provided for your taxes. If you prefer to mail a check:
MIB Agents (please include Ian in the memo line)
PO Box 858
Barnard, VT 05031
Thank you for using your powers for good to Make It Better for kids with osteosarcoma.
FED ID #81-1109906