|Birth: ||Nov. 5, 1993|
|Death: ||Apr. 11, 2006|
Tyler was the son of my cousin Corey and his wife Kendra
Tyler A. Duncan knew he was dying of cancer, but he refused to spend the time he had left in a hospital bed.
So the 12-year-old Lakemoor boy checked out of Children's Hospital of Wisconsin last month and filled his final weeks with a lifetime of amazing activities.
He took a family vacation to Arizona, recorded a CD of a song he wrote with the rock band Tesla, and rode in a hot-air balloon and a helicopter.
And when his illness prevented him from taking a much-desired trip to Hawaii, his friends and family brought the Aloha State to him with a party dubbed the Luau for Life.
"There were so many things going on the last month of his life," said family friend Gigi Vinci of Plainfield. "He wasn't afraid at all."
Tyler died Tuesday after a 1 1/2-year battle with Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
He was diagnosed with the disease in 2004. Despite painful treatments and lengthy hospital stays, he always kept his sense of humor, Vinci said. He particularly liked playing pranks on the nurses at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge and then at Children's Hospital in Milwaukee, where he was treated most recently.
"He would put fake spiders on the floor and fake poop on the floor and say he couldn't make it to the bathroom," Vinci said.
Tyler touched the doctors and nurses who treated him in other ways, too.
Colleen Hammond, a nurse at Lutheran General, recalled how he asked her about her life and family even though he was heavily medicated.
"I've met thousands and thousands of kids, but there was something different about him," Hammond said. "He was one in a million."
Tyler celebrated his life with about 600 people at the March 10 luau, which was staged at the Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington. The bash featured hula dancers, fire dancers, Hawaiian food and other elements from the island chain, Vinci said.
Tyler, a guitarist, even performed with his band, Voltage.
"He loved it," Vinci said. "When he got home that night, he told his parents it was so much better than going to Hawaii because he was with his family and friends."
Thank you so much MDSeagull for sponsoring Tyler's Memorial Page.
Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
Created by: Debbie
Record added: Jan 11, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 17384787