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The Toughest Battle: While his peers were experiencing ‘freshmen firsts’, Blake Trout was preparing for the battle of his life

Trout meets members of the Minnesota Wild hockey team. Courtesy of Blake Trout

Hoping to get an answer for his chronic headaches, Blake Trout ‘21 went to get an MRI. When the results came back, they were worse than anyone could have imagined. The scan revealed a golf-ball sized brain tumor causing his severe pain, which he later would refuse to let define him.

Two weeks later, at the University of Minnesota, Trout underwent an eight-hour surgery to remove the tumor for further testing.

His tumor was cancerous and Trout was diagnosed with Medulloblastoma in November 2017.

“I felt sad,” Trout said. “Not horribly, but enough to where I cried a little. I just could never understand why me. Why am I the one with cancer? Why am I the one that has to deal with this?”

Courtesy of Blake Trout

Trout’s cancer fight began at the Mayo Clinic, where he would receive radiation treatment for 42 days, where Trout would spend Christmas and New Year’s, apart from his peers. While receiving treatment, Trout was not able to go home, instead, he stayed at the nearby Ronald McDonald house. This journey made Trout realize how fragile life can really be.

“I learned to be grateful and realize how quickly life can change,” Trout said. “One day I’m playing sports, and the next day I’m sitting in a hospital bed for the night.”

Trout’s parents, Jeff Trout and Tracy Sanner, stood by their son’s side the entire journey.

“Blake has taught me to be a better person,”  Sanner said. “I promise to live my life always knowing what we have been given and how much love we have to give.”

“Blake’s battle has reminded me not to take life for granted,” Jeff Trout said. “Slow down and enjoy each precious second you’re given with those you love. Focus on the things that truly matter and thank God for all his blessings.”

Ethan Hansen ‘21 has been friends with Trout since second grade and was the only friend allowed in Trout’s hospital room after his surgery. The duo’s friendship has changed since Trout’s diagnosis. Instead of spending time at school together, they now go to Timberwolves games, play Fortnite duos and plan to take a week-long vacation this upcoming summer to keep his mind off of treatment.

Blake was able to take a break from chemo last month to enjoy Florida with his family. Courtesy of Jeff Trout

“Watching Blake go through this makes me very proud of him,” Hansen said. “He is fighting as hard as he can just to beat this stupid cancer. He is my best friend, and some days I just really miss seeing him. Now we only hang when he doesn’t have chemo.”

Trout is now receiving chemotherapy at the University of Minnesota every four to six weeks until October 2018. Trout does not attend high school due to his low immunity and rigorous appointment schedule.

“I believe that everything happens for a reason,” Trout said. “The doctors that I have are very talented, so I put my trust into their hands. I never fear death. God gives his toughest battles to his toughest soldiers.”

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