Having fought a courageous 9 year battle with stage 4 colon cancer, my wife Theresa “Tesa” DeLaup succumbed to the disease on November 14, 2013. This was a gallant fight of incredible magnitude with chemo, radiation and 3 major surgeries including the MOAS (Mother of All Surgeries) for her entire 9 year battle. You are invited to view Tesa’s Life in Pictures to see her enjoying life.
Less than 6% of stage 4 colon cancer patients survive 5 years.Cancer.com
A quote from Dr. Robert Wolff, chief G. I. Oncology Physician at MD Anderson Cancer Research Hospital at Tesa’s Visitation the day before her funeral…. “Never before have I had patient like Theresa, her fight will go down in our books as one of the bravest efforts ever. I kept throwing some really bad stuff at her and for years asked her to taper or slow things down and she simply refused. Again, I have never had a patient like her and quite possibly never will…she absolutely did everything right and had an incredible will to survive. She continues to be an inspiration to me and my entire staff.”
5 days before Tesa passed and realizing that the end was near, I was trying to grasp for ways to make Tesa’s life and incredible effort something that would be remembered forever. The thought of losing the love of my life, wife and friend of 55 years was simply unbearable for me. Thus, I immediately called my Harborwalk friends and neighbors with the idea of recreating the Flamingo Isles Mecom Pilot and Lighthouse on the same exact location it was built on or about 1960. (see Flamingo Isles History for details). The dilapidated lighthouse was torn down and never replaced.
A lighthouse committee was formed consisting of myself, Tom and Shannon Rusnak (architect), Jeff and Sandy Dolen (Project Mechanical Engineer and Developer), and Travis and Jane McKenzie (Materials and Engineering Specialist), all owners in Harborwalk. This group was formed in a matter of a few hours on Saturday November 9th, 2013 only days before Tesa’s demise. In 2 days Tom had renderings of her lighthouse and I was able to show her our plans and have her pick the color of her eternal light. She chose her favorite color “aqua blue” and was overwhelmed with joy at the thought of a living monument to her incredible story. Tesa’s love of the outdoors, wildlife including birds and fishes and her incredible outlook on life will be the inspiration for so many symbolic gestures created throughout the park.
Two months later, this team of inspired property and homeowners are ready to build an incredible modernized version of the original lighthouse and call it the “THERESA E. DELAUP MEMORIAL LIGHTHOUSE AND REFLECTION PARK” or short “Tesa’s Lighthouse”. Net proceeds will be donated to the MD Anderson Cancer Research Center in Houston, Texas.
Harborwalk is quickly becoming the finest coastal living subdivision on the Texas coast. It is our belief that this memorial lighthouse in Tesa’s honor will quickly become a landmark identifying a spirit of love and happiness that currently surrounds the facility. It is also my belief that this development has huge opportunity for all involved and is fast becoming the finest facility on the Texas Gulf Coast. A lighthouse of this magnitude will quite simply “put Harborwalk on the Map” for all of Galveston Island to view. My efforts are for all parties involved.
The lighthouse committee wishes to extend our thanks and gratitude to Haythem Dawlett and the entire staff at Legend Communities for donating the land for our magnificent project.