COLUMBUS, Ohio — Time is measured by minutes, hours, days and of course years, but how does one measure love and a lifetime?
Four years ago, 10TV’s Chris Bradley was diagnosed with Leukemia. During his nearly two-year battle, there was no one more courageous. That’s because Chris leaned heavily on his faith, hope and unwavering love.
Chris passed away at the age of 53 on Dec. 5, 2018.
Chris’s husband, Jason, reminisces about when they first met.
“I did fall head over heels in love and we were a couple for 23 years,” Jason Bradley-Krauss said.
Jason not only fell in love with Chris Bradley, he literally fell hard.
“I was actually wearing a pair of rollerblades and he was standing in line at a fundraiser run and I turned around and the earth moved under my feet. I literally fell to the ground and Chris started laughing and thought it was so funny and I thought 'what a turkey',” Bradley-Krauss said.
This became the first chapter of their incredible love story. Truly an unbreakable bond that defies the vows of “death do us part.”
"I do believe that love prevails, and I believe that love burns with an eternal flame,” adds Bradley-Krauss.
Therefore, with eternal love, Chris’ passing didn’t turn into their final chapter.
“Grief is hard and it’s heavy and it takes time, so I do see my role now as being someone that wraps his arms around the great love that we had and carries that love forward,” says Bradley-Krauss.
And so the next chapter begins.
“I remember the first year after Chris passed away on the first warm spring day, I came out to the garden and I wasn’t prepared for the emotion that came. The wave of emotion that struck me. It was powerful,” Bradley-Krauss said.
But where flowers bloom, so does hope. And to plant a garden, one must have faith in a more beautiful tomorrow.
“Through Chris’ illness, his faith shown so brightly. Chris truly believed that something good could come from his illness and he wanted something good to come from his illness,” Bradley-Krauss said.
Leukemia might not have been the type of storm that Chris could forecast, but even he knew the greater the storm, the brighter the rainbow that follows.
“That faith has really helped us weather the storm,” Bradley-Krauss said.
Chris may no longer physically be with us, but his memory and love live on. Jason is making sure of that by accepting a nomination for the 2021 “Man of the Year” on behalf of the Columbus Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. It’s a 10-week fundraising effort that started on April 1. Each dollar donated, serves as a vote.
“I’m really not doing this for the title myself, but I am doing this so that something good can come of the wicked journey we found ourselves walking through and I am doing this so we can find a cure and we can change lives,” Bradley-Krauss said.
That was what Chris hoped for and that will become his legacy.
“I’ve set a big goal. I’d like to raise $100,000 for this organization and in raising $100,000 if I meet my goal, I will be blessed with the opportunity to name two research grants in Chris’ honor and I would like to do that for our son, Spencer, and our daughter, Maria,” Bradley-Krauss said.
Their family knows just how very important that research is.
“Chris was on several different clinical trials during his illness. He actually was on a medical trial for the drug Gilteritinib, which was FDA approved on the day I signed his papers for hospice. That was a powerful moment,” Bradley-Krauss remembers.
Powerful in that Chris’ journey helped pave the way to saving countless others from the horrors of walking through Leukemia. Chris knew that in his final days and now this quote has become somewhat of a life motto for his family:
“One day you will tell your story of how you overcame what you went through and it will be someone else’s survival guide.” - Brene Brown
Bradley-Krauss is now telling their story because he believes that together we have the chance to create something extraordinary and make real progress in the fight against Leukemia, Lymphoma and all cancers because everyone wins when cancer loses.
Krauss has launched "Eat Local for Love." From May 28 through June 7, his campaign is partnering with a couple of locally-owned restaurants that have agreed to donate 15% of their sales for dine-in and carryout orders to the cause.
These restaurants include Ledo’s Tavern, City Tavern and Flatiron Tavern. Make sure to mention “Eat Local for Love,” “Chris Bradley,” or “LLS.”
To donate to the campaign in Chris’s honor click here.
If an individual or organization wishes to write a check, they can do so by making the check out to The Columbus Foundation and in the memo line, include Chris Bradley Memorial Fund.
You can also donate through the Columbus Foundation via their Text2Connect feature. Just text F3716 to 614-230-0347. You will be sent a link that will direct you to the Chris Bradley Memorial Fund.