Monday, October 18, 2021

Grieving family remembers one of three premature baby boys born in Texas hit by Harvey

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Ohio’s Good Samaritan Hospital named in the above obituary.

When Gary Gotze was in critical condition during Hurricane Harvey, doctors first administered a chemotherapy drug called ibrutinib, which was an experimental therapy used to treat leukemia and other blood diseases. However, within days of coming into the hospital, a single dose had failed to stabilize him, leaving him unable to move his arms or legs.

Although the doctors had other options, the only hospital in Jefferson County that would admit him, Baylor University Medical Center, still had a cap on the number of “high-risk” patients who could receive ibrutinib.

“It did start an opioid rage of horror,” said his wife, Lisa, who relayed how other patients started passing out after receiving a two-milligram dose of the drug.

The treatment’s limited availability forced Gary to be hospitalized for another five days in an intensive care unit before his condition stabilized enough to allow for him to be released.

“To see a patient in excruciating pain having to sit down and not be able to lift up his leg and sit up again, you could see the humanity in him,” Lisa Gotze said. “You could see the strength that he had in him to be strong and to fight this for as long as he did. He has stayed very strong.”

Although Gary died May 30, he was remembered this week as a fighter who fought for his life for the three weeks that his family lived at Baylor.

Read the full obituary at

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