HEARTBREAKING: Mother loses 2 sons to cancer, youngest now diagnosed with the same cancer that killed both elder brothers


MANILA, Philippines – What could be more painful for a mother than to see her child lying in a coffin? A mother from Oroquieta City in the Philippines has lost not just one but two sons to cancer one after the other in just a matter of 2 years’ time. And just recently, another devastating news came – the youngest son has been diagnosed with same cancer that killed both his older brothers.

In 2014, a heartbreaking video of a cancer patient Rowden Go Pangcoga marrying his fiancee Liezel May in the hospital went viral all across the globe. Rowden was the eldest son of Lorelei Go, a single mother.

It was in May 2014 when the Pangcoga family found out that Rowden had stage IV liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma) and had only 3 weeks to live despite showing no symptoms until a couple of weeks prior. It was a devastating news for the whole family. Weeks later, Rowden fulfilled his promise to marry his fiance at the hospital surrounded by family and friends. Ten hours after the couple exchanged their vows with their daughter standing as a flower girl, Rowden passed away at the age of 29.

Just a month later, the family underwent cancer and blood tests. They found out that the second son, Hasset, carried the same type of cancer at stage III and liver cirrhosis. He was at the height of his career as a celebrity chef, food analyst and consultant and businessman. Despite having surgery, alternative medication, and chemotherapy, Hasset passed away in October 2015. Like his brother Rowden, Hasset was also 29 years old at the time of his death.

Chef Hasset

But this is not the end of this heartbreaking story.

Hisham, the youngest son, was already diagnosed to have liver cirrhosis upon check up a month after Rowden’s demise. He has been taking maintenance medications and has been going through regular blood screening and MRI to monitor his liver. In February this year, the doctors found a 3 cm tumor in his liver, as well as several nodules, spreading around it. It is the same exact liver cancer that took his two older brothers at the age of 29. Hisham is 27 years old this year.

Pangcoga Brothers: Rowden, Hisham (Moi), Hasset

But there’s a glimmer of hope for Hisham.

As a short term solution to get rid of the tumor, his doctors gave him three options: a surgery, RFA, and TACE that each will cost him 3,000 – 4,000 USD per session. For these procedures, Hisham would likely have to do it 2-4 times a year, depending on how aggressive the cancer is. The long term solution is to undergo liver transplant which costs 100,000 USD if done in the Philippine Government Hospital (PGH).

Not willing to give up, Hisham appeals to the public for help in funding his transplant and other ensuing treatments through a GoFundMe Campaign.

As of posting, the campaign has already raised $14,241 but still is a long way to go to reach the $150,000 goal.

To help save a mother from further distress of losing another son, donate at Hisham’s GoFundMe campaign here: Free Moi’s Liver/GoFundMe

Photos: Hisham Go Facebook, #KMJS10

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Lorenzo Caballes, Jr.
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Lorenzo Caballes, Jr.

Lorenzo is a full time English Language Teacher to high school students in Phitsanulok. He reads and travels for self-enrichment. He also writes at khunkrupinoy.com where he shares his struggles and joys of being a teacher in Thailand for almost a decade now.