Magic Moments: The Allen Family

By: Nikki Davison

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — This is part of an ongoing partnership between KLKN-TV Channel 8 and Union Bank and Trust showcasing Magic Moments in December of 2020.

Jeremy Allen is a single dad, just a normal guy raising his family. Devin, 14; DJ, 12; Drake, 11; and Delaney, 7, are awesome, busy kids, and life is full and crazy — especially since cancer keeps getting in the way. And this cancer’s nasty stuff; it’s persistent and stubborn, but so is Jeremy — he’s a fighter. Multiple people nominated Jeremy for a Magic Moment, knowing his family could use some extra love this season.

Grit and dignity

Jeremy has been waging his cancer battle since 2013, when he had a seizure while driving, crashing his car into a light post. Once the cause was determined, Jeremy and his treatment team weighed the options and proceeded with the removal of an astrocytoma, which is a type of malignant tumor.

After surgery, Jeremy moved on; after all, he had a life to live. There was work, and his kids kept him beyond busy with sports and activities. This wasn’t a time to stand still, or even slow down — there’s always stuff to do. But last spring, Jeremy started to experience loss of balance and stroke-like symptoms with partial facial paralysis. (He had to stop taking his anti-seizure medication due to the high cost.) A rushed trip to the hospital ensued, and it was determined that a port to drain the fluid from his brain would do the trick, so he’d be back in the game, without the confusion and impaired motor function. But the surgery to install the port revealed that the beast was back, occupying its old haunt — only this cancer was playing hardball: now it was a glioblastoma. This is tenacious stuff, but he’s fighting hard, with grit and dignity, showing his kids how this is done.

Being fully present

Due to the location of this tumor, another resection would come with the likelihood of major loss of motor function, among other things. Jeremy decided living a life of deficits wasn’t worth the risks of surgery. He chose not to operate; being fully present for his kids was more important. He is currently undergoing chemo and radiation, wearing a portable device designed to accompany treatment for this type of cancer. He’s a family guy, and his care is definitely a family effort: His parents and sister help a ton, as do his kids. Daughter Devin does most of the cooking and makes a great nurse. This is such grown-up stuff, and though they’ve been awesome about it — they’re great kids — he would love for his fearsome foursome to have a typical kid-like Christmas. Enter UBT and the Magic Moments team!

Because transportation is pretty important to this family, and Jeremy’s car was in need of repair, UBT worked with Tuffy Tire and Auto to have it running smoothly again. U-Stop and Super C supplied gift cards so gas costs won’t be an issue. The family will be enjoying meals together from Healing Food by Andrea, and a Hy-Vee gift card will allow them to stock up on groceries. Thanks to a generous donation from Scheels, the family is able to purchase what they need for sports and outdoor fun, in addition to new Air Jordans for Devin. Delaney had L.O.L. dolls on her gift pile, and a Tinker Crate project kit will keep Drake busy, while DJ received a new gaming headset. Jeremy will stay toasty in new warmups and stocking caps.

Speaking of warm, that’s the kind of Christmas UBT wishes for the Allens — warm and wonderful. Happy holidays, Allen family

Categories: News, UBT Magic Moments