This cancer center is God’s gift to Battle Creek

Joseph Milum, Patient

Photo of Joe MIlum

In July of 2020, I found out I had gastric cancer. For some background, I also have a history of lymphoma of the stomach and pancreatic cancer.

Here at the Bronson Cancer Center in Battle Creek, I have undergone surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, and I continue to come for chemo treatment. The care I have received here is nothing short of phenomenal. I thank God for all the doctors, nurses and staff members. They help me get through everything I am dealing with.

Dr. Tariq is my medical oncologist, and is he amazing! He may be young, but he is so knowledgeable and he loves what he is doing. When I first met with him, he was explaining my diagnosis and treatment in a way I didn’t understand. I told him, “hey doc, slow down!” And that’s what he did. With a smile, he slowed right down for me. He and the nurses are like that. They make sure I understand what I am here for and how I am going to be treated. They always make sure I know what to expect. It puts my mind at ease. Dr. Tariq always tells me that if I have any questions or don’t understand something, he will repeat it for me. We have a great understanding and I appreciate that.

We are so powerful when we work as one. That is a mantra I really like. At the beginning, I rode the bus to treatment. I am a very independent person and it is hard for me to admit when I may need help … We all need help sometimes. Thanks to the Bronson Health Foundation, I now get rides to and from my appointments. It is so easy. The car just shows up at my house, brings me to the cancer center, and takes me home afterwards. In my current condition, it is not easy to take the bus – not to mention this is much better during COVID – so having these rides available to me is a beautiful gift.

Along with my gratitude for the Foundation, and the fact that they have helped make it easier to get to and from my appointments, I also have so much love for Battle Creek. This community really is something else. I feel so cared for at the cancer center, and I feel so cared for in this community as a veteran. I have lived here for over 30 years and it is home.

Overall, I just want to say what a special team is here at the Bronson Cancer Center. It is such a wonderful thing to be of service to others. The team here is just that. They are so giving of themselves, making sure patients like me get better. The staff is phenomenal. The whole place is phenomenal. This cancer center is God’s gift to Battle Creek. I am so happy to be able to get care here.