Wall Stadium Race Car Driver Hopes to Make Full Recovery
Joshua Matthews' friends and family are doing all they can to help him. Here's his story.
You may recognize Josh from Wall Stadium, where he is best known for racing the red #57 ketchup car. Or you may recognize him from his weekly racing RPM podcast that he does with a group of his racing friends. Now his racing friends and family are coming together to help Joshua's family as they face a new challenge.
On May 23rd, Josh went to an urgent care facility because he had bruises on every single part of his body. Some small, some very large. He was sent to the ER for blood work...and by that evening he was transferred from Southern Ocean Medical to Robert Wood Johnson in New Brunswick.
He has been there every since, diagnosed the following day with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia (APL). Doctors have given Josh lots of hope for a great chance at survival but he has had to spend the first three weeks of treatment in isolation. The hardest part was not being able to see his son.
Now that Josh has been moved out of isolation Bryce, his soon-to-be 5 year old, has been able to visit once a week. Josh's father and wife, Lisa, have been taking turns spending the days and nights at the hospital so that Josh isn't alone.
Josh is just coming to the end of his first round of chemo and will have a small break from treatment before beginning his next round. They hope to be able to continue treatment closer to home in Waretown but the hospital won't discharge his until his blood work is stable.
With a couple more rounds of chemo scheduled, it'll be a challenging journey both physically, emotionally, and financially. The bills, as you can imagine, are astronomical for cancer treatment. This family has an out of pocket expense of over $13,000 through their health insurance, with added costs of whatever treatments/medicines,procedures/doctors aren't covered.
And even after Josh completes treatment, he is still facing years of doctor visits, blood work, scans, biopsies, and other testing. It is quite overwhelming for a family with a young child.
Josh, who works for a small, family-run pool company (Paramount Pools) out of Oakhurst, is surrounded by support from the family he works for and his racing family. Josh's friends describe him as having a unique sense of humor and a natural 'blood, sweat, and tears' work ethic. He's a guy that can stand out among his peers but is best known for the size of his heart. If you're looking for a man to lend a helping hand who wants nothing in return, Josh is your guy. Now those that love him want to turn the tables and give him the help he needs.
You and your family are invited to a Pig Roast to help raise money for Josh and his family. It takes place on Sunday, July 16th, at Chapter House in Howell.There will be live entertainment, a chance to win prizes, and your kids will have a chance to meet some of the Wall Stadium and New Egypt Speedway race car drivers and see their awesome race cars. And don't miss the Adult Big Wheel Races! For more info, CLICK HERE.
If you would like to make an online donation, CLICK HERE.
Meanwhile, Josh, my prayers are with you and your family. Stay strong and here's to a full recovery!