The Carlos G. Baldoceda Memorial Fund (Carlos' Fund) is dedicated to supporting young persons with a passion for music and to raising awareness and money to eradicate brain tumors.
Carlos G. Baldoceda was starting his junior year at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California when he was diagnosed with a brain tumor. He then underwent a craniotomy at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and came out of the surgery with flying colors. He then underwent a combination of radiation and chemotherapy. When the radiation was completed, he continued oral chemotherapy. After a consultation at Duke University Medical Center another chemotherapy was added to his regimen. Carlos did great for one year. He was able to see his friends, go back to school, and do what he enjoyed most -- play the guitar.
In November 2002, almost exactly one year after diagnosis, Carlos' tumor recurred. His chemo regimen was switched. During this new chemotherapy, Carlos' tumor continued to grow, and Carlos began to have his first symptoms from the tumor. He started complaining of left-sided arm weakness and feeling unsteady when he walked. The doctors at Duke then decided to put Carlos on an experimental protocol. Though very harsh, this therapy helped the tumor remain stable for four months. Throughout his diagnosis, Carlos tried different complementary medicine therapies, including nutritional supplements, herbs, teas, and an unconventional combination of chemotherapeutic drugs.
In May of 2003 Carlos' tumor began to grow aggressively again. His medical team at Duke recommended that he stop treatment and begin hospice care. Carlos returned to Chicago and spent his last few months surrounded by friends and family who loved him. Carlos passed away peacefully on August 5, 2003.