Last year, Tyler Traut owner and founder of Underground Pizza CO was diagnosed with a one in a million cancer diagnosis: Synovial Sarcoma. After a four year battle with misdiagnoses, Tyler’s prognosis was grim according to his team of physicians, but by the “grace of God, it never spread,” according to Tyler. Now, Tyler is currently still battling but finally in a place to re-open his prized pizza business, Underground Pizza CO.
“I am finally doing great. I am still recovering, but I am just blessed to still be here fighting. The outpouring of support from the community last year has been incredible. The words of encouragement, and knowing that the community was rallying together in support gave me the strength to keep going and I couldn’t be more grateful,” said Tyler. Tyler temporarily had to close Underground Pizza as he battled his diagnoses, and in the last few months has just recently reopened to serve the community a few days a week while he got back on his feet.
“I would love to say that I am better than ever, and while that may be true in a lot of ways, it doesn’t always feel like it. My goal is to come back and get everything back that I was originally working for. I always had the goal of opening up a brick and mortar restaurant, and while it was put on hold last year, my goal is to open my own restaurant at the same time as I finally ring that cancer free bell… in five years,” said Tyler.
“I plan to be open as much as I physically can over the next few years. I want to continue to do events and catering, and of course be open after the reopening Wednesdays-Saturdays from 11AM-7PM,” said Tyler. The Grand Re-Opening event will take place Saturday, January 14th at Crossties in Downtown Texarkana. Tyler has reached out to several bands including: Will Bullock and Aaron Ferrel who will play around 2PM. “I am excited to host a whole day party in celebration of the re-opening. I want this to be a chance for me to thank all of the community who rallied together in support last year, and to thank the customers who have loyally waited for my re-opening,” said Tyler.
When TXKToday asked Tyler if he had anything he wanted to say to the community, he sat in silence for a moment filled with emotion. “I don’t think the community really knows just how much they have helped me. Not only in my business over the last few years, but in my battle with cancer. When you have so many people rallying behind you, you literally have no choice but to fight, and that’s what I did. The support of my family, friends and the community has meant the world to me, and I cannot wait to celebrate the re-opening of my business with this celebration!”said Tyler.
Congratulations to Tyler on his Grand Re-Opening and on his remission! We wish you nothing but health and happiness in the New Year!