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Hi I'm Biz Gauthier

I'm a cancer conqueror, a handi-capable city warrior, and a disability advocate. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I’m a cancer survivor 3 times over. At age 4 I was diagnosed and treated for leukemia. At 9, I relapsed and underwent a bone marrow transplant. I was cancer free until January 2008 and my last undergraduate semester. During an unrelated orthopedic appointment a MRI was ordered to investigate some leg pain. A large mass was found in my lower spine. Diagnosed with Bone Cancer that surrounded my left hip and tailbone. I went through rounds of chemo before I was referred to the Mayo clinic in Rochester MN, where a brilliant and attentive surgeon had just developed a new type of surgery and reconstruction. That surgery has left me a L4 incomplete left hemi-plevectomy which means that my left leg, tail bone, some vertebrae, and left hip were amputated. Needless to say, the recuperation and rehabilitation after the surgery were intense. And it took two and a half more years before I was even well enough to return part-time to school and finish my degree from Brigham Young University. I now get around exclusively in a manual wheelchair and living has changed drastically. I now live in Chicago and I love it here. I love being active and I love being a part of the local brave disability community. Experiencing the city in a wheelchair is a unique and sometime frustrating experience but I have my Faith that offers me strength and power to overcome.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon because I believe in the restoring power of Christ. Take it from an amputee to know that I am restored to a state of happiness through Christ love and support. Though not as observable to everyone else, we all have spiritual mountains that we need to scale. To be frank, we all at times, develop spiritual handicaps. We feel those sad shortcomings most acutely when tragedy strikes. When we fail a test, we make a mistake, a family member gets sick, a loved one dies. We see our spiritual selves trip and fall, we become depressed or even angry. Whys and worries crowd our brain and you feel that your spiritual muscles just might not be strong enough to carry this load. Our challenges and disabilities are done away with when we partake in Christ’s goodness and salvation. It is marvelous to think about and to ponder while we strive hard to be better. Christ’s love offers us heavenly assurance of true restorative powers and feelings of hope and happiness. The atrophy of our spiritual muscles and the healing of soul’s handicaps come through the love and grace of a loving savior. He wants to rehabilitate us and help us grow and achieve our spiritual best. Refer to 2 Corinthians 12: 9-10 He is there always. In good times, bad times, and ok times. We need to be diligent and do what we need to so our spiritual selves can take on any challenge, any trial, any job, and any work. With the Lord’s help our weaknesses and limitations become strong.

How I live my faith

When I was baptized I took upon the name of Christ. That means that I promised to be a part of His ministry of charity and love. And there are many ways to be a part of this ministry of Love. When I was in school I had the excellent opportunity to travel the Ghana Africa and volunteer for a summer at a Salvation Army Clinic. I met some of the most hardworking and dedicated ministering nurse angels while I was there. These Salvation Army workers taught me that it is through service to your neighbors that life meaning can be found. I then dedicated myself to serving my global sisters and brothers. When I came back to the US I was diagnosed with cancer and now I am in a wheelchair. I was devastated to think that I wasn't going to be the world trekker and servant I want to be. But I was wrong, it has taken me time but now I know that I don't need to be digging ditches in India or vaccinating babies in Africa to be a service missionary of Christ. Everyday I see people that could use my help. I might be limited by my body to physically lift up the downtrodden but that doesn't mean that I can't serve them. Through concerned conversation, kind words, compliments, notes, hugs, or smiles someones day can be brightened. I believe that through my service to Heavenly Father's children I show my dedication to my Savior. I endeavor to fulfill my promise to Christ and be a servant of charity.