Rebuilding old truck helps young cancer patient - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Rebuilding old truck helps young cancer patient

By Steve Uyehara – bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - As far back as he can remember Jacob Edralin has been a gear head.

"We just went through all the dirt bikes last night," said Jacob, "getting them running again and sell them."

In fact, his mom could see the signs back when he was a little kid.

"It started with Lego's," says Monica Edralin as she thinks back with a smile. "He would put it all together and then he would take it all apart. Every single toy he's had, he would take it all apart."

Jacob lead a fairly normal life as a Waipahu high school student until last October. He started having excruciating headaches.

But as Jacob recalls, when he went to the doctor, "he said yeah, it's just migraines," said Jacob, wincing as if he could still feel the pain. "take this and this, whatever it'll be fine."

But it wasn't.

Pain kept building until mom took him to Kapiolani Medical Center for a CAT scan.

"The results from the CAT scan showed the mass like the little mouse in the middle of his brain," recalls Monica. "That was causing hydrocephalus, brain fluid wasn't able to drain down his spinal cord so it was described to me as the worst pain that a human could go through."

Surgery drained the fluid and gave him some relief.

But a week later... a biopsy showed he had brain cancer.

Jacob remembers it as a scary time.

"I couldn't take it at first. I was like, this isn't happening. This doesn't happen to me. After awhile I started getting used to it. It's like this is me, you gotta get through it."

Jacob's gone through chemotherapy and is now getting radiation treatments.

In the meantime his dad asked him if there was anything he really wanted something to lift his spirits and offer a distraction during the ordeal.

"He said, you know dad I really want a truck," said Monica. "So my husband sold his work truck and they sold a dirt bike and they got the money together and they bought a used truck."

Dad bought him a Nissan hard body from 1993 and they planned to restore it.

Then one day someone crashed into the truck and dented the door.

They took it to SIGS auto shop and met co-owner Dan Dutra.

Dan's heart was moved by Jacob's story so he and the rest of the shop decided not just to repair the door but to "sup up" the entire truck for free.

"There's some body rot in some places," says Dan as he points out a series of bad rust spots to Jacob. "We're gonna manufacture and refabricate some metal's to fix that. At this point, we just gotta figure out a color now."

Jacob's answer: Rootbeer Brown.

The best part of the project is that Jacob gets to be a part of it, getting his hands dirty and learning how to make some of the repairs.

I asked Dan why he decided to help out.

"If there was one thing that he could look forward to that would be positive in his life, this would be that," says Dan who's worked with cancer patients before. "We're in a situation where, this is what we do, so we can help out."

Coming up next week we'll show you some of the progress they've made as they get closer to the finished product.

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