Unthinkable tragedy as mother AND father-of-three are diagnosed with cancer within months of each other – and one won’t see their young daughter walk down the aisle
- Father-of-three given devastating diagnosis he has an inoperable brian tumour
- Came two weeks after his wife had a mastectomy after breast cancer diagnosis
- Kirsten and Pete Rasmussen, from Hobart, told he only has 7 to 10 years to live
- His stage two Astrocytoma cancerous brain tumour is inoperable, doctors said
- If doctors tried to remove it, they said it could leave him as ‘a living vegetable’
A devoted father-of-three is preparing to leave his young children behind after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour just months after his wife found out she had breast cancer.
Kirsten Rasmussen, from Hobart, Tasmania, was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer shortly after giving birth to her third child in August 2020.
Ms Rasmussen had a full mastectomy but two weeks later her school teacher husband Pete, 35, suffered repeated seizures and was diagnosed with an inoperable stage two Astrocytoma cancerous brain tumour.
The Rasmussens – parents to daughter Estelle, one, and sons William, six and Thomas, four – were then gave the devastating news the father had seven to 10 years to live.
Father-of-three Pete Rasmussen with his wife Kirsten and their three children – daughter Estelle, one, and sons William, six and Thomas, four. The father is preparing to leave his young children behind after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour just weeks after his wife underwent breast cancer surgery
‘[There were] lots of doctors looking at me asking me if I could see, if I was all right, if I had a headache,’ he told The Hobart Mercury.
‘The tumour was in such a position that it was inoperable and if it was to be operated on I could become deaf, unable to speak or may or may not be conscious.
‘The doctor said I would be the definition of a living vegetable.’
Mr Rasmussen said his wife’s illness had taken its toll on him in the form of panic attacks, but that last month he then started suffering from seizures.
One of the seizures came while he was driving with his children in the car, forcing him to pull over as his vision became unsteady.
‘I’ve asked my brother if he can walk my daughter down the aisle,’ he said.
Their loved ones have set up a GoFundMe fundraising page to contribute towards the Rasmussens medical bills and give the family a sense of security despite the uncertainty surrounding their income.
The couple’s children are pictured. ‘One of the most challenging parts of this story is that [Kirsten and Pete] have had to tell their young children that a second of their parents is about to undergo an unbeatable cancer journey,’ a fundraiser set up to raise money for the family said
Ms Rasmussen still needs to undergo several surgeries ‘and is many months away from a return to work’, the fundraiser said
Kirsten and Pete Rasmussen. She was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer shortly after giving birth to her third child in August 2020
The page has already raised more than $87,600 despite only being published on Thursday.
‘Kirsten’s outlook is positive, however she still needs to undergo several surgeries and is many months away from a return to work,’ the fundraiser said.
The page said the family were well-known and active in the Hobart community, with Kirsten working as an early childhood educator and Pete as a teacher at the city’s St Virgil’s College Junior School.
‘One of the most challenging parts of this story is that [Kirsten and Pete] have had to tell their young children that a second of their parents is about to undergo an unbeatable cancer journey,’ the fundraiser said.
‘Your contribution will allow them the financial freedom to heal and prepare for the future of their family without their father.’