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Poker News | Casino Poker | Tournament Reports

Full Tilt Poker Charity Tournament – Bad Beat on Kidney Failure

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We’ve all had tragedies and sadness in our lives and each personal story as it unfolds, touches us with memories and compassion.  This is up close and personal and Roger Fowler’s story.  It could be anyone of us or someone we know and love; as you read it, think about how you’re going to spend a few hours playing poker at Full Tilt on November 12 at 21:00 hours.

I've had trouble with my kidneys since high school.  In college I was diagnosed with Polycystic Kidney Disease, where cysts grow inside the kidneys, one of the most common side effects is producing kidney stones, which as you know I've passed at least 100 of those over the last 10 years or so, at least.
Well, every time you go to an ER with a kidney stone, the first reaction of the doctor is to CT scan you, which equals about 300 x-rays at once.  Until a couple years ago, I never knew to say "no" to the scan until I was having a conversation with my primary care doc who told me that I've had way too much radiation exposure (I'm guessing between 60-70 CT scans) and that I needed to stop having them.
Couple years ago, I developed renal cancer, and although I never got an official word, it was discussed that it could have been brought on by the over radiation on my kidneys from the scans, or at least the exposure to that much radiation at least helped it.   I had that piece of my kidney removed and after treatment I was ok.
The year that I developed the cancer was also the year that I went out to the WSOP.
  I have known Andy Bloch since the Full Tilt beta, and I don't mean that to sound like he's a good friend or anything, he was just very involved with Full Tilt and was always playing and he was just someone that I played cards with a lot, plus Rocco, Clint and I had started the forum at that point [], and had done the Katrina Relief fundraiser, and Andy was a big help in that, and anything else that the forum needed, Andy was a big help in getting it done.   

That summer at the WSOP, was the first 50k HORSE, and I was there to cheer on Andy at the final table and watch that epic battle with Chip Reese, so I finally got to meet Andy and find out he's the great person that he seems like online.  

Later in the week, I was playing a cash game inside the Amazon Room, and started to hurt a lot, I walked out and into the FTP Suite (I think it was the last year that they had those)  and sat on the couch.  Some of the FTP people came over and I explained the pain to them and that I needed an ambulance most likely, so they took me back into the private part of the suite.   So here I am in crippling pain, sitting on a couch in the FTP suite, Andy was sitting on my right and tried his best to make me comfy and always asking if I needed anything.  

Across on the other couch (facing us) was Phil Gordon and Mike Matusow, Phil was eating and I don't think he was too impressed when I kept throwing up in the trash can in front of him.  Clonie Gowen was there as well as JJ and David Singer.

It was a thrill in a way to be there with all of them, but it was pretty embarrassing too. So with Andy seeing firsthand how sick I get, after knowing him for about 2 years at that point, I think is why  he's willing to" host" this event.

Anyway, I had surgery 2 years ago to remove the area around the cancer and was fine until a few months ago when it came back in my left kidney.  I've not been able to work nearly as much as I need to, and I just can't keep up with my rent, and even with my insurance the co-pays and meds are a lot of money (although they are working with me on those) But with 75% less income (estimate) right now I'm having a really hard time. I'm 2 months behind with the rent, and about to drop to 3, Utilities are falling way behind, I'm doing my best and I've got a great supporting cast of friends, but I'm about to fall way too far behind.  
I have a few more weeks of treatment left, and we will evaluate again and see if I need surgery or not, But even with the surgery I should be able to return to work around Feb if all goes well, and would be able to return to work.
The "pros" that I've had the chance to have a relationship with mostly came about because of the forum, and the wonderful things that we did while I was a part of that, I've been really lucky in that regard to get to know some of the best people I've ever met, the forum has a lot of really special people, I never imagined it becoming such a close family when we started it.
The easiest way to find the tournament on Full Tilt Poker is to click on the ‘Requests’ tab, then ‘Find Tournament by ID’ and enter the Tournament #67971755.  The buy-in is $10+$10, the tournament is ‘Bad Beat on Kidney Failure’ and the password is: CailtyssRulien.

If you don’t have a Full Tilt Poker account, you can sign up now and receive a deposit bonus of 100% up to $600 using the bonus code PKRWORKS – and you’ll receive special freerolls too.  If you already have an active real money account, sign up for the tournament now.  Andy Bloch was the first player to sign up and when you register for the tournament, you’ll note that Jennifer Harman and Marco Traniello are signed up also.  Help make this a fantastic turnout, you know what to do.

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