Aspenite who fought rare cancer dies in California
Jasper Lecht, who was raised in Aspen and graduated from high school here in 2000, died Friday night in California from complications of a rare and aggressive cancer.
Lecht fought Ewing’s sarcoma for 16 months before he died in a Marina del Rey hospital at the age of 24, said his stepfather, David Bluefield. He was surrounded by family and friends, including 12 from the Aspen area.”He died very peacefully with a smile on his face,” Bluefield said.His circle of support threw a successful fundraiser for Lecht at the Cantina in February.”It was amazingly well-attended, and they raised a lot of money,” Bluefield said. “It was fantastic to see the outpouring of people.”Lecht was “just one of the greatest kids you’d ever want to meet, sweet and even-tempered.”
After Aspen High, Lecht attended the University of Colorado at Boulder. He was 12 credits shy of a bachelor’s degree in psychology when the cancer first showed up.”This bump on his shoulder had become malignant,” Bluefield said.In November, Lecht endured a seven-hour operation on both lungs and his shoulder. One month later he went through emergency brain surgery.”And the next day, Dec. 4, was his 24th birthday,” Bluefield said.The new year began with hope, as his radiation treatment proved successful.
“We actually had some good news just last week. We were told that the treatment was working,” he said. “But he was compromised because he was only able to use one lung at a time, the one they weren’t working on.”It’s kind of like a race: The stuff that was working was racing against the stuff that was killing him.”His funeral is today in Marina del Rey. There will be a memorial service for family and friends April 29 in Aspen. The family will release information about location and time in the future.Chad Abraham’s e-mail address is email@example.com
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