Christie Brink Engelmann being treated for rare brain tumor
Family members and friends will gather in Rochester later this month for a benefit to aid Christie Brink Engelmann who has spent nearly a year fighting a rare brain tumor. The benefit is slated 5-8 p.m., Friday, Feb. 24 at The Eagles Club, 917 SE 15th Ave., Rochester.
Engelmann, a 2003 Forest Lake High School graduate, and her husband, Jason, became parents to their first child, Hannah, on Feb. 27, 2011. Four weeks after Hannah’s birth, Christie began having headaches which became more and more severe.
An MRI discovered that she had a rare tumor in her brain diagnosed as Pilocytic Astrocytoma. The tumor was blocking the passage of cerebral spinal fluid. Surgery on April 11, 2011 removed as much of the tumor that the surgeon could remove. Rehabilitation and two additional surgeries followed to correct more fluid buildup in her brain.
Christie completed radiation therapy last July but suffered set backs of blood clots in the lung and episodes of bleeding in the brain from the tumor which caused stroke-like symptoms. She is currently taking chemotherapy medication to slow or stop the growth of the remaining tumor cells. Five rounds of chemotherapy will be necessary.
A dietician by profession, Christie was employed in Rochester before her medical condition prevented her from continuing to work. She holds a master’s degree and earlier received her undergraduate degree from Concordia College, Moorhead. Jason Engelmann is a registered nurse at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester.
The benefit will provide funds to help with the family’s growing medical bills that are not covered by insurance.
During the Feb. 24 benefit, there will be a silent auction, bake sale and raffle. Food will be available for purchase. Live music will be provided by Sentinel Event and will begin at 6 p.m. The band will play until midnight.
A $10 donation per person at the door will be appreciated.
A fund for Engelmann has also been opened at a Rochester bank. Donations may be sent to the Engelmann Benefit Account, Think Bank, 4638 SE Maine Ave., Rochester, MN 55904.
Christie Brink Engelmann is the daughter of Lori and Kevin Brink of Forest Lake. During her high school years, she was a two-time state golf tournament participant for the Rangers.