Couple both diagnosed with aggressive tumours just months apart
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Featured Image Credit: GoFundMe
A husband and wife - who are both 38-years-old - were diagnosed with aggressive cancers just months apart.
Cori Salazar, from California, was diagnosed with thyroid cancer after noticed 'a fairly large' neck growth in March this year.
Around that same period, husband Zak Salazar began to suffer from headaches, later turning out to be a stage 4 brain tumour.
“Initially, we felt shocked. Is this really our lives?” Cori Salazar told TODAY.com.
“We processing as we go because there’s so much going on.
“They confirmed something was going on.”
She added: “The biopsy came back inconclusive, and so they just said if you want to biopsy again later, you can. If you want to get it out, it’s up to you.
“They confirmed that it actually was cancer, a high-grade, fast-growing thyroid cancer.
“I would need to go back in for a second surgery as soon as possible to get the rest of my thyroid removed, as well as some lymph nodes to make sure that it didn’t spread.”
In June, Cori's second surgery was able to remove the rest of her thyroid and some lymph nodes.
She was told her cancer was grade 1 and her tumors cells and tissue looked mostly healthy.
Her follow-up tests will determine whether or not the cancer will return.
Husband Zak said: “The day of Cori’s first surgery, I had a really, really bad headache.
“I remember sitting at her bedside in the prep room for surgery and thinking to myself, ‘Oh gosh, my head really hurts.’ I could barely keep my eyes open.”
The pair share three children together.
A GoFundMe account has since been set up with a goal to raise $800,000 (£626,000), which would help cover costs of 'surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy'.
"During this challenging time, neither parent will be able to work, leaving them in a fiscally vulnerable position and making it very hard to provide for their family," their friend Kaela Demerjian wrote in the fundraiser description.
"This GoFundMe is being launched to help them cover essential expenses.
"Any amount you can provide would be greatly appreciated by Zak, Cori and their three children.
"They are deeply grateful for prayers, support, assistance, and love."
Zak added: “We obviously have such an incredible support structure around us with our friends and our family and the wider community.
“The community has just been astounding and incredible, and it’s been an extremely humbling experience.”
At the time of writing, $259,333 of the GoFundMe target has been raised.