A Time to Help

Brent with his wife Susana and their two children one week before Brent passed away 

We've recently had a family member pass away.  My mother-in-law's brother passed away of cancer leaving behind his wife and two children.  I’ve been thinking of him and his family a lot today and realized that I would do well to share some of his story in hopes to inspire some and also to help his family.

Brent Manwill’s obituary reads:
Brent Kevin Manwill1962 ~ 2012Brent Kevin Manwill, 49, passed away peacefully on February 12, 2012 at his home in Midvale, Utah. He was born July 4, 1962 to J. Stewart Manwill and Mary Jean (Coons). He married his wife, Susana Velasquez, in 1990 in the Salt Lake Temple. Brent graduated 1987, Computer Science degree from the University of Utah and was employed at Utah System of Higher Education. Volunteered from 2008 to present at Huntsman Cancer Institute and was named "2012 Volunteer of the Year." Known for his compassion, kindness and his service to others. Brent is survived by his wife, Susana; son, Adam (20); daughter, Cindy (18); mother, Jean Manwill; sisters, Louise Price, Karen Caldwell, Peggy Olson, Linda Bowman. He was preceded in death by his brother, Jim, and father, Stewart. A viewing will be on Friday, February 17, 2012 from 6-8 p.m., Union Park 4th Ward, 7500 S. 700 E., Midvale, Utah. Funeral services at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, February 18, 2012 at the same location; viewing one hour prior to services. Interment will be at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1850 East 10600 South immediately following services. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made through Zions Bank to the "Brent and Susana Manwill Family Donation Fund."Condolences can be sent to the family at www.premierfuneral.com. (PLEASE MAKE NOTE THAT THE ABOVE DONATION ACCOUNT WAS LISTED WRONG AND IS FOUND UNDER “SUSANA MANWILL DONATION ACCOUNT”)

My mother-in-law shared with me that the last 3 years have been very difficult for the family.  Brent had been laid off work and spent 2 years searching for work.  During this time Brent managed to make time to volunteer at the Huntsman Cancer Institute long before he ever was diagnosed with cancer himself.  Also during this time, Brent’s older brother Jim was diagnosed with cancer and Brent was able to spend time with Jim as he received his treatments at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. 

Jim wrote this on his blog,

I have been prepped for starting chemotherapy this Thursday afternoon. 
My first infusion treatment will have two special Buddies along side me. My dear sweet wife & my younger brother. My brother has been a volunteer at Huntsman Cancer Institute for several years. Over the past year or thereabouts, he has volunteered each Friday afternoon in the Infusion room (where patients receive chemotherapy injections). He wanted me to have my treatment on Friday, so that he could be there with me, but I said if it was on Friday, he would only be able to spend brief moments with me as he would need to tend to the needs of others there. But by having it on Thursday, he can sit with me & provide undivided time and attention to me without any guilt of depriving others. He now sees it is best”

A few days later Jim wrote: 

Originally I invited him to be there because I knew it was what he wanted & was important to him. But it didn't take long up there for me to realize I was the one that REALLY wanted & needed him there for me! He was AMAZING!!! He knew just what patients wanted or needed & he was so proactive! And whenever I asked for something, he immediately took care of me! I even got him to rub my back, because my back was bothering me. Later I asked him to remove my shoes. He got up, went across the room & returned with surgical gloves on to remove them. WHAT A BUM! Brent, THANKS can't express the appreciation for your long hours there solely for me! Having you there... PRICELESS!!!

Brent’s brother Jim passed away January 12, 2010.

When Brent found a new job he asked if he could arrange his work schedule in a way to allow for him to continue volunteering on Fridays in the Infusion room.  His dedication is an inspiration.  He once noted to another volunteer that although others found the Infusion room to be a depressing place, he found it to be a place of hope and courage and faith.  He found that he meets remarkable people there.

Brent had only been at his new job a few months when cancer was found in his stomach. They removed his stomach and thought he was cancer-free. Then discovered it had spread to his liver. Only ten percent of the liver at the time. They aggressively fought the cancer, ultimately using two different types of chemo, but the cancer was so aggressive it wasn't even slowed down by the chemo.

When Brent passed away February 12, 2012 he left behind a legacy of service and love for his family.  Brent’s family is in need of our prayers and support as they make their way without him here.  All donations can be sent through Zion’s bank to the Susana Manwill Donations Account." If you live in the Utah area you can go into any Zion’s bank to make a deposit into the account.
If you live out of the area you can send a check made payable to: Susana Manwill Donations Account.  Send the check to: 
Attention: Charlotte
1 South Main Street Suite 100,
SLC, UT 84133
The account will only be open for donations for 30 days.  It closes on March 14th 2012 so please consider making a donation soon.

It is my hope that you will cherish life and serve others as Brent has done.  His family would be greatly blessed by your support.

If you have any questions please contact me at ilovethewaysheblogs@gmail.com.  If you would like to talk to Charlotte, a Zion’s Bank employee who is familiar with the account, call 801-844-7078. Or call any Zion's Bank branch to confirm the information in this post.