Trumbull resident Lisa Milne has been dealt a difficult hand in life when it comes to her health.

In 1998, Milne was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Eleven years later, in 2009, she was diagnosed with melanoma, resulting in the removal of her right eye along with her lymph nodes. A final and devastating blow came in September, when she was diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer.

Despite the medical struggles, the single mother has been blessed when it comes to the love of her two kids, Ian and Taylor. Both children attended Trumbull schools and are now in college. Ian is a junior at Hamilton College and Taylor is a freshman at UConn.

“The first time we heard a cancer diagnosis, it was a really scary thing, not knowing what would happen and seeing her have to worry,” Ian Milne said of the melanoma. “At this point, her feeling is ‘throw whatever you want at me, I can handle it.’”

This holiday season, Ian and Taylor have been working to make one of their mother’s wishes come true — a family trip to Hawaii. Ian and Taylor are working against the clock to be sure that medical issues won’t prevent their mother’s dream vacation.

“I really wanted to do something for her and I didn’t know what,” Ian said. “I asked her recently what was something she always wanted to do. She said Hawaii.”

As college students unable to afford a family vacation, they started a fund-raising page on GiveForward.com called “Love for Lisa.”

In a letter on the fund-raising page, Ian writes: “Regardless of how poor treatment was making her feel, or how sore she was from the numerous operations she underwent, she never stopped supporting her children with enthusiasm. Not once did she miss a single football game of mine, and no matter how poorly I played she was always there smiling, waiting for me afterwards. I want to give the world to my mother. My motivation to succeed and do great things in life comes from my desire to fulfill my mother’s every wish and to be the kind of son she can be proud of. I want her to never stop smiling. I want, more than anything, to make all of her dreams come true.”

In just a few weeks, the family has received a great deal of support. On Tuesday, they had raised $16,269. The goal right now is $20,000, and once they achieve the goal, any additional funds raised will be donated to the Jimmy V Foundation for cancer research.

“For once in her life, I do not want her to feel constrained by money or health issues,” Ian writes. “I want her to be liberated from the stresses of her everyday life and transported into a world where she is free to experience love and beauty unabashedly, even if only for a short period of time.”

The last time Lisa Milne took a vacation was in 2001 for a wedding, her son said.

“I want her to sit on a beach and relax and just lose herself there,” he said.

Lisa Milne continues to work five to six days a week, giving every cent she can to her kids, Ian said.

“She’s been the most supportive mother,” he said. “Given her circumstances, she has always been there for us, no matter what. My dad was never really around and she just did everything she could to make sure we were taken care of.”

They told Lisa Milne about the fund-raiser on Thanksgiving.

“She got pretty emotional,” Ian said. “She was proud of us. But I just feel like we are doing what any other person would do.”

There are just a few days left to meet the fund-raising goal. To read Ian’s full letter, see family photos and donate, visit their fund-raising page.

“Even if a donation is not possible, please keep Lisa in your thoughts and prayers,” Ian writes on the page. “Cancer has affected us all in one way or another, and it is important that we never lose hope. Miracles can happen, and with your help, miracles will happen.”