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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tags for balloons

Here is something I wrote up if you would like to attach it to your balloons you release.

Justin – HAPPY 18th BIRTHDAY!! We still miss you everyday that goes by. You are our super hero and always will be! Anyone who finds this balloon please know it was let go for a young 17 yr old that passed away from a disease Dr’s know very little about. Please help us spread the word! Justin E Rodgers Foundation for Lemierre’s Awareness Inc

Just copy and paste it in a word document or note pad. ;0)

Happy Birthday Baby brother we love you!

I will take pictures of all the gifts Justin will get tomorrow and post them on the site!
Thank you for helping us make this day so special!
Anyone coming to my mom's please try to be there @ 4.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Justin E Rodgers Foundation for Lemierre's Awareness Inc

We are officially OPEN for Business! I received our Tax ID # today! We can now open a bank account and proceed like a normal Non Profit. We are going to set up tables at craft fairs around St. Louis this Oct - Dec and sell hand made candles, stationary, ribbons and anything else we can think of. We will be attaching cards to each item directing them to this website and asking them to help us spread the word of this disease.
We are also able to accept donations now! Any kind of donations are great! Most people think directly of Money but we can accept anything that will help us spread the word, your time, paper to print on, toner or anything at all. We will soon have a website for our Non Profit! All this in perfect time for Justin's Birthday!
Speaking of Justin's birthday don't forget to release your balloon @ 5:00 Sunday!
Anyone that is going to try to make it to my mom's you can come anytime around 4 and please bring your own balloons. THANK YOU!!

Luv Tammy

Sunday, September 21, 2008

My 3rd Cousin Jacob

Hi there! Last Tues I received an email from my 2nd cousin Cindy. She was letting us know that her nephew was sick over last weekend with the flu. After some time passed his dad just couldn't help but think that something didn't seem right and he thought of Justin and what had just happened to us. He decided to take him to the ER. Ends up he has bacterial meningitis. The Dr's told him that if he would have waited any longer he would be in some SERIOUS TROUBLE. When she first told us about him he was still sedated and had a probe in his brain to monitor the swelling. As of today he is awake and looks to be doing much much better! I wanted to share this story with everyone even though it has nothing to do with Lemierre's. We all know and have that little voice in our heads when something just isn't right! Please, please, please listen to that little voice. Jacob I can speak for everyone in our family and every one that reads this site when I say, "We are so glad you are OK and you are one lucky guy to have such a great family! We hope you get to come home soon!"

** Justin's birthday is this Sunday Sept 28th. I have had many emails from all over the US saying they will be joining us in a balloon release in there homes Sunday at 5:00 pm. For everyone that will be coming to my parents house to release balloons we are asking that everyone please bring your own balloons with you. We have no idea how many people will come but please bring your own balloons. Any color that you like! I am going to print out tags for you to attach to the balloon if you like.
Thank you!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Check this out!!

I received this email just a little while ago!

Hi Tammy,

Just wanted to send you a quick email about something I thought might interest you. I am from Toronto, Canada, and a friend of mine is in medical school at the University or Toronto. The other day in class they did learn about Lemierre's syndrome, the bacteria that causes it, and that it's prevalence is on the rise! I was surprised, but very happy to hear, that future doctors in Toronto at least are learning about it in medical school. Just thought you'd be happy to know that too!

I'm very happy to hear that Lemierre's is being brought to Dr's attention!!!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Justin's article

Well between my sister, Stephanie and I think we went to close to 30 stores trying to get our hands on a New York Times. I finally was told the magazine actually comes inside the news paper and that you can find the news paper in the boxes outside the stores. Anyway I never did get my hands on one but Stephanie says she bought some for us. We are also going to call Dr Lisa Sanders (the Author of our article) and see if she could send us some. I think I'm going to call some places tomorrow to see if we can get our hands on a couple more. I didn't realize how spread out they are. I thought it was kind of like the Post Dispatch everyone sold them. Anyway it is a GREAT informational piece! Thank you so much Dr. Sanders for helping us get our word out!

Love, Tammy

Well it's out!!!

Here is the link to the article!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

more and more cases

I have had 3 more cases emailed to me this week!! AND did you hear!!?!!? One of Dr Phil's young interns had strep throat and then passed away 1 week later. Kinda of interesting huh! Well I emailed the show 3 times letting them know about Justin and our website and that I heard of the intern that passed and thought maybe he had Lemierre's, but no word back. Justin from ID his mother said they had 5 cases of Lemierre's pop up in the last 6 months!!! They did a news paper interview and gave them our website info for people to go to to learn more about Lemierre's!!! If you get a chance to do any interviews or talk with any people that can get our info out as well please do so. I have soo many ideas running through my head on ways to bring about awareness! I would love to just start contacting all the major city's news papers and talk to them all about doing an article.. Don't forget the New York Times Magazine comes out Sept 14th!!! Also Justin's birthday is Sept 28th in 3 Sundays please, please, please release a balloon to him at 5:00 that evening and wish him a happy 18th birthday! Take pictures and send them to me if you could. It doesn't matter if you live in CA, ID, WI, Canada, Mexico we would love to see everyone that did this for us so take pictures and email them to me @ The 2 colors we are using to promote everything we do is Green and Blue.
Thank you to everyone that emails me their stories about their Lemierre's battle!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

New pictures & Justin's Birthday

My mom and I added some new pictures to the site during the last week. If anyone has pictures of Justin they would like us to possibly post or would just like to share with my family and I please email them to me.

Justin's 18th birthday is Sunday Sept 28. My mom would love for everyone to release a balloon on that day in honer of Justin. It doesn't matter where you are CA, FL, CO, Canada, Mexico anywhere if you would like to release a balloon for Justin we would appreciate it. I am going to make up little tags to put on the string of the balloon. You all can copy and paste it onto a note pad or word document and print it out then attach it to the balloon and let them go 5:00 pm your time Sunday Sept 28th. Take pictures if you can and send them to me. We can post them here and let everyone know what part of the country or world you are in. Anyone in St. Louis can come to my mom's and let their balloon off with us if you like. If not you can let them off at your house or park or anywhere you chose! I will post more about this as we get closer to the date. ;0) OH and don't forget Sept 14th pick up a New York Times magazine and check out the article about Lemierre's! It's Justin's story but I don't think they are going to give out his name!
Thank you very much!!!

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Justin's news article in the West Magazine

This was taken from

Rockwood student dies rapidly from little-known disease
By Diane Plattner

In April, Eureka High School student Justin Rodgers began to complain of a severe sore throat and was dead approximately one month later from an unfamiliar disease. Now, his mother hopes to spread awareness about the deadly disease.
Justin died in the early morning hours of May 12, the day after Mother’s Day, after losing a battle with Lemierre’s Syndrome, a serious bacteria that is not well-known and even doctors are prone to misdiagnose the disease. Unfortunately, Rodgers’ doctor was among that group after initially diagnosing him with strep throat on April 11, said Sheryl Rodgers, Justin’s mother.
“Justin had said, ‘Mom, this is the worst sore throat I’ve ever had in my life,’” Rodgers said.
She said that Justin’s doctor took no throat culture and gave her son medicine for strep throat. She said her son’s condition worsened over the next few days during which he had increased high fever, chest pain and a lump in his neck. On April 14, Rodgers took her son to St. Anthony’s Hospital, which transported him overnight to Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital where he underwent extensive testing, including X-rays and blood work, Rodgers said.
Rodgers said that hospital officials diagnosed him with Lemierre’s Syndrome, a bacteria that can surface after mouth trauma. Last July, Justin was in a car accident that resulted in mouth injuries that required him to get major dental work, including a recent new tooth. In addition, Justin had suffered a broken nose just before the onset of his sore throat, his mother said.
“I wonder if all this woke up the bacteria, which was already living in the body,” Rodgers said.
The last time Rodgers saw him fully awake was a few days later, when hospital officials decided to place her son on a respirator and sedate him with drugs.
“He was out of it but still with us then,” Rodgers said. “He would frown when the doctors worked on him. So he had some responses.”
However, Justin’s lungs kept collapsing, prompting hospital doctors by April 25 to place him on an ECMO machine to help rest his lungs and heart. Doctors at that point also put him into an induced coma, Rodgers said.
“At that point there was no response from Justin,” Rodgers said. “Still, I talked to him and rubbed his sore spots to let him know we were there.”
By Mother’s Day, Justin was leaking too much blood, prompting doctors to decide to remove him from the ECMO, a move they said was risky if his lungs were not healed enough.
“Once they took him off the ECMO, Justin’s face was getting gray,” Rodgers said. “He was holding his own for a few hours, but then he starting going downhill.”
Justin died early the next morning following Mother’s Day with his immediate family, including three older siblings, by his side, Rodgers said.
“He was our baby,” Rodgers said. “I think the hospital tried to keep him going so he did not die on Mother’s Day.”
The tragedy is not the first for the Rodgers family. They also lost a 4-year-old child in a horseback riding accident and had a stillborn child many years ago, Rodgers said.
“I thought God could not possibly do this to us again,” Rodgers said. “I asked why again, why us. But there is no answer. Here we are walking on egg shells again.”
Rodgers said she was at least thankful that Justin’s funeral was so big that people were standing outside, a huge tribute to his life. She also hopes to honor his life with a campaign to help spread awareness about Lemierre’s Syndrome, which she said often hits people between the ages of 14 and 25. It is not spread by kissing but instead lives in the body, she said. Her goal is to make people, including doctors, more aware of its symptoms so they are not mistaken for strep throat.
“I do not want Justin to have died in vain,” Rodgers said. “This is one bad bacteria. It is very serious. People should not treat it lightly.”
To learn more about Lemierre’s Syndrome, visit the Rodgers’ family Web site at