A Time of Miracles
A TIME OF MIRACLES - What really happened to the RRF & Why
Over the past few months, as the ‘Rosacea Wars’ have raged across the boards, many readers have expressed irritation at being asked to support one side or the other without the full facts. Here is our outline on the splitting of the Rosacea Research Foundation.
The split came to public attention in May 2005, when Geoffrey Nase broke the painful news that he was fighting a desperate battle against two forms of cancer. Even after major brain surgery, he was quickly back on the boards, offering advice to rosaceans despite hours of pain, vomiting from seizures, and difficulty in coordinating his fingers to type out messages.
It came as a tremendous shock when Nase revealed that he had walked out on the RRF because the other board members - his three close friends - had accused him of faking cancer. It was hard to believe, but even harder to disbelieve. There was general puzzlement that strong friendships could have dissolved into a mess of bitter recriminations and even hatred.
Then came a ferocious trading of insults on the ESFB board in June when Nase and Chuck Young, RRF vice-president, allowed the public a glimpse at the real issues behind the split. It was against this backdrop that we eventually formed our group to “support and validate mutual concerns about the behavior displayed by Nase, both publicly and privately”.
THE RRF TIMELINE
While you read the following timeline, please bear in mind that in the five-week period from March 21 through to April 25, while Geoffrey Nase was allegedly hard at work cooperating with Dr Jerry Darm to create the Oregon Rosacea Research and Treatment Institute, he also supposedly went through:
- 5 operations on his gastrointestinal tract
- the loss of 45% of his blood
- 3 ‘deaths’ from heart attacks
- 2 major brain surgeries
- 1 serious blood infection
January 27, 2005
The RRF is launched with Geoffrey Nase heading the Medical Advisory Committee (MAC), David Pascoe serving as president of the board of directors, Chuck Young as vice-president and Artist Cloutier as treasurer. Emails to the key RRF ‘leadership group’ are sent to these four board officers as well as various others including Shelley S., Christopher G and sometimes Andrew Reid.
GN informs the 'leadership group' that he has bowel cancer.
GN announces that he had just had bowel surgery.
Leadership group is told that GN bled from his surgery site, losing almost a third of his blood volume, and was rushed to local ICU. Has been unconscious since the ambulance picked him up, according to messages from GN’s email address, sent on March 31 in the name of Amanda, who introduced herself as one of his neighbors.
Amanda reports that GN is still in critical condition, comatose and losing blood. That night he is rushed by helicopter to Weiss Memorial Hospital in Chicago, dying 3 or 4 times and being ‘paddled’ back to life. The oncologist who performed his surgery hopes to seal the bleeding and save GN’s upper intestine.
GN emerges from coma. Wakes to be told surgery to repair the ripped bowel may kill him.
Phones Pascoe and Cloutier, telling them he will probably die in the next few hours. Confirms that he lost 45% of his blood, his heart stopped three times in the helicopter, and he now has a serious blood infection. Main artery to his intestine has to be clamped.
According to messages sent by Amanda (always from GN’s email address), he is in Bernard Mitchell Hospital for in-patient care. (This was after being taken by helicopter to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where his original surgeons performed three more operations.) No one was to call him through any of the hospitals, just use the cell phone never previously mentioned. (GN later claims that phone calls apparently coming from his own house were made using a special phone he had taken with him to all of the hospitals.)
GN tells RRF leadership group through phone calls and emails that he is experiencing “neural/cognitive symptoms” and goes for tests.
GN phones to say that the doctors have just found a massive brain tumor. He is given only a 10% chance of surviving surgery, scheduled for 5 am next day. RRF board are all praying for him to pull through. His weight has dropped to around 100 pounds and he is dangerously weak.
GN phones his friends to say he has just woken. Surgeons removed 60% of tumor but remaining 40% was too deep to operate on and would have to be treated externally. In a later phone call, GN says surgeons have decided to operate to remove the rest of the tumor, despite only a 1% chance that he can survive the op. Surgery is scheduled for 6 am next day. GN says he is not expected to last the night. Even so, he agrees to help others by joining a research study.
Fearing that GN has died, members of RRF leadership group phone hospitals in Indianapolis and Chicago but cannot find him. That afternoon, GN phones several of them, saying that he has come round from surgery, he has been placed in a terminal ward, but his doctors say he will be 100% after a few months of some minor outpatient rehabilitation.
When GN next phones, Pascoe and Young question whether he really is in hospital. Cloutier asks if he is perhaps “re-living and embellishing” an operation he may have had in the past. GN is furious and hangs up. He then puts Cloutier in contact with his close friend, S., who states GN is at home! S. also reveals she was only told by Nase a few hours earlier about a brain tumor, even though GN had said many times that S. and her family were visiting with him during both brain tumor operations. S. also states that GN has recently gained a lot of weight, not lost it as claimed just three days previously. When the discrepancies are pointed out to her, S. states GN “may be at the point of making things up”.
GN sends a short email to the RRF saying that he is leaving for personal reasons. Pascoe replies, asking GN to wait “several days before announcing anything to the public” so the rest of the board could try to sort out some kind of compromise that might let GN continue working for a rosacea cure.
GN emails Pascoe, copied to RRF leadership group, submitting his resignation. He spends hours firing off long and furious emails, threatening to destroy the RRF and the reputations of the other board officers. For the first time, comes up with story about trying to keep his critical health problems secret from his ex-wife so he could have unsupervised access to their young son.
Pascoe announces to Rosacea Support that GN and the RRF board “have decided to part company, effective immediately”. GN’s photo is removed from RRF website. (The other MAC photos are taken down less than a week later.)
GN tells RS group that he has been battling cancer for 8 months: “a stromal tumor in the intestine and a benign tumor in the brain near the temporal lobe (the tumor cells metastisized)”.
GN tells RS group that he had brain surgeries on April 23 & 25.
GN tells RS group that he left the RRF in disgust at the harm RRF members had done by ‘snooping around’, trying to find out which hospital was treating him. GN posts link to photos showing a long, healed surgical scar around the side of his head.
On the RS board, GN demands “much needed explanations from the three board members, the Vice President (especially), the Treasurer and the President (of the RRF)”.
On ESFB Channel, GN condemns the other RRF board officers as “jerks” and “unprofessional people to the nth degree”. On RS, controversial posts about Dr Darm’s past history see GN losing his temper and attacking other posters.
GN resigns from RS group, saying for the first time that he left the RRF because the other board officers had accused him of faking brain cancer and two highly dangerous operations.
On ESFB, RRF vice-president Young posts his personal rebuttal of GN’s stories, claiming that GN was unemployed, apart from money gained from fees for rosacea referrals, etc. Young claims that GN had cruelly lied to his close friends in the RRF, putting them through an emotional nightmare by pretending to be close to death time after time.
GN claims that he was home within 48 hours of the last operation because the tumor had been entirely encapsulated and was easily and safely removed.
June 7 / 8
GN claims that the troubles with his fellow RRF officers stemmed from his attempts to stop them from behaving dishonestly over donations. GN calls for donors to demand immediate refunds and report the RRF to the security services.
GN posts on ESFB that he “should have just stayed down a year ago when all this crap was happening and i was having a brain tumor removed”. When challenged on how the brain tumor could have been taken out in 2004 if it was only discovered in April 2005, GN claims that the tumor was treated for more than a year with radiation and chemotherapy before turning to surgery. He quickly gets Ed, the ESFB owner, to delete the thread.
When proven to have been taking undisclosed payments from Dr Darm, GN reveals that this was in accordance with the contract he signed with Darm on April 1, 2005. He had clearly forgotten that on April Fool’s Day, he was supposedly mid-way through a 4-day coma!