For Laurence, life was all about using his gifts to help others. Even throughout his treatment for glioblastoma multiforme, a type of brain cancer that is difficult to treat, Laurence always looked for ways to make a difference. His decision to donate his Make-a-Wish funds to help address extreme poverty caught the attention of the band U2, who later signed Laurence’s guitar backstage at one of their concerts. It was Laurence’s final gift, however, that has made the greatest impact. Laurence made a courageous decision to donate his brain to help advance brain tumor research.
Laurence Carolin passed away on January 15, 2010. Following Laurence’s lead, others have made similar decisions, and scientists both at U-M and around the country are working hard to improve treatments for children diagnosed with brain cancer.