Coming Full Circle to Wisconsin
He traveled to Milwaukee last February from his home in Naples for a hockey game. Feeling a little off with some unexplained bruising and a persistent nosebleed, a blood test at an Urgent Care showed his platelets were at 5,000. Normal is 140,000. Matt Kleczewski received a diagnosis of leukemia.
Faster than a hockey puck, Matt was admitted to Aurora St. Luke’s, where his life became a flurry of tests, drugs, surgeries, chemo, radiation, fevers, bleeding, infections and eventually, a stem cell transplant. At one point, he weighed 275 pounds and they drained 40 pounds of water off in 3 days. He had to sleep sitting up for 2 weeks because of post-nasal drip from a bronchoscopy.
Matt’s mother Claudia lives in his hometown of in Medford, WI, and other family members are in the Milwaukee area. But being immunocompromised means you are at high risk of infection. Germs are your enemy, and they’re everywhere – people, places and things. Once he was out of the hospital he needed a safe place to stay.
“To have KH available in the Covid era is beyond priceless,” Matt said. “The fact that you can be around everyone else who cares as much as you do about being immunocompromised, it was a no-brainer. Plus, it’s great to be in a place where I talk to other people struggling through the same things. It’s really helped me a lot to talk to other patients.”
“I walked in here as a stranger and immediately, I felt like family,” said Matt’s mother Claudia. “I felt the compassion and love. Kathy’s House is a beautiful building. They’ve thought of everything but the people inside are the cherry on top.”