Sarcoma Stories: Eric Skogman

Type of Sarcoma: Retroperitoneal Liposarcoma
Date of Diagnosis: March 2008

Eric-Skogman_edited-1In March 2008, 38-year-old Eric Skogman was diagnosed with Retroperitoneal Liposarcoma. After invasive surgery to remove a six-pound tumor from his abdomen in April 2008, he started chemotherapy treatments in August 2008 to fight the life-threatening disease. Like many, Eric and his family were shocked when he was diagnosed with the disease. Neither he nor his family had ever heard of Sarcoma and knew nothing about the subtype Liposarcoma. They all quickly learned how rare it is and that more funding is needed to fight the deadly disease.

Eric wrote: “In early March 2008, I was diagnosed with a malignant tumor in my abdomen called retroperitoneal liposarcoma. I had surgery on April 21 to remove the tumor, which had grown rather large. The surgeon estimated that the mass was around eight or nine pounds. Liposarcoma is a rare malignant tumor. About 10,000 people each year are diagnosed with it. It can appear in the arms, legs and abdomen. It is a slow growing tumor that often has no symptoms. Even after surgical removal, they are notorious for coming back in the same area. If so, additional surgery is required. For myself, thinking back over the last four or five years, there were some symptoms like some abdominal discomfort, but nothing that was alarming or required medical attention. It wasn’t until late February of this year that I noticed a strange pain – like my ab muscles were strained – and then felt the large mass on the right side of my abdomen. It was shocking to say the least.”

A snowmobiler for 25 years, Eric worked as a magazine editor in that industry for more than a decade. Knowing that more funding for Sarcoma research is needed and that snowmobilers are very giving people, he contacted the Karen Wyckoff Rein in Sarcoma Foundation (KWRISF) to set up a snowmobile ride fundraiser. The first Mud Dogs Ride for Sarcoma held its inaugural run in February 2009. Seven riders drove more than a combined 2,000 miles and raised over $3,400 for RIS. The ride succeeded not only in raising funds for research but also in raising awareness about the disease.

Eric passed away April 20, 2011. Eric will be remembered for his love of life and loving those around him. Eric graduated with a degree in journalism from St. Cloud State and spent many years in power sports magazine publishing, most recently as editorial director for Midwest Sports Publishing Network. Eric loved snowmobiles, motorcycles, baseball and his guitar. He was actively involved with the Karen Wyckoff Rein in Sarcoma Foundation. Survived by father, Roger; brother, Colin; former wife and still good friend, Lisa Lenger. Preceded in death by his mother, Linda. Eric died at peace with himself, his loved ones, his huge supportive community and his God.

The Skogman family have established an RIS Named Fund and hold an annual Mud Dog race to remember Eric. To contribute, please select “Eric Skogman/Mud Dog Sarcoma Fund” from the drop-down menu on our secure donation page, click here.