Concert to benefit ‘Erik’s Fight’

Community rallies behind father, friend battling Lymphoma

Concert to benefit ‘Erik’s Fight’Erik Catlin and his wife Sabrina with children (clockwise, from top left) Dakoda, Connor, Everly and Brantley — Photo by Laura Austin

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By BRIAN COSNER

News Review Staff Writer

Erik Catlin, 33, is a life-long Ridgecrest resident, BMX enthusiast, father and is currently fighting Lymphoma after receiving the diagnosis last November.

He is also receiving chemotherapy treatments to eliminate the aggressive diffuse large B-cell lymphoma cancer cells.

To help alleviate some of the pressure on the Catlin family in their time of need, his friends have organized a benefit rock concert on Saturday, March 23 at the Desert Empire Fairgrounds. Proceeds will go to help pay for the cost of Catlin’s recovery.

After four different hospital trips and a misdiagnosis, Catlin landed at City of Hope cancer hospital in Duarte, Calif. His oncologist gave him the news that he had two forms of lymphoma – incurable but very slow-growing follicular lymphoma and a more aggressive, but curable, diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

“I’m not a doctor, but I’m assuming it’s from smoking cigarettes for 14 years,” said Catlin when he first made the announcement. “If you smoke, I’m begging you to please quit. I quit in January and now wish I never started smoking in the first place. It’s dumb and expensive and now I’m really paying for it.

“God has really blessed me throughout my life and has always supernaturally protected me. I fully believe he’s doing it again.”

Nearly four months later, Catlin has undergone four chemo treatments – with two more to go – and said things are looking “very positive.” Right now, he’s looking forward to the concert.

“I wasn’t really supposed to know about the concert,” said Catlin. “It was going to be a surprise, but everybody was having a hard time keeping a lid on it.”

Catlin said his close friend Aaron Hise, who used to do videography for Catlin’s BMX videos, lives in Phoenix and wanted to put the concert together.

“He got a hold of my wife Sabrina and my younger brother Christian,” said Catlin. “They started figuring it out and putting things together, but they ended up calling me because they needed help. So I started getting the word out and getting sponsors together.

“Aaron knows Jason DeVore [lead singer for Arizona punk rock band Authority Zero] and Jason said he’d love to do a concert. Aaron talked to some other bands and got a lineup going.”

DeVore is headlining the concert which also features Phoenix-based band Since We Were Kids” and local band D.O.G.

“I definitely want to thank Aaron, my wife and everybody who has been praying for me and my family,” said Catlin. “There have been so many people supporting us, helping us and encouraging us with their words and donations. It’s just been a crazy outpouring of love.”

Sponsors for the event include Fury’s, FSB Catering, IWV Brewing, ACE, T&T Alignment, Sierra Auto Recycling, I-Rock, VCA Crestwood, TJ Frisbee, United Rent-A-Car, Aces High Tattoo, Buttermilk Acres, Moe’s Music, Ridgecrest Tire and Secret City Tattoo.

For more information or to help contribute, find the “Erik’s Fight” page on Facebook (facebook.com/ donate/303900523583415).

For tickets and other specifics on the benefit concert, visit brownpapertickets.com/event/4055752.

Story First Published: 2019-03-15