Relentless For A Cure!
Apr 12, 2013
“I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everthing, but still I can do something; I will not refuse to do something I can do.”
― Helen Keller
My precious baby sister, Liz, lost her battle with Hodgkin's Lymphoma on October 16, 2011. She was only 32 years old, suspended in time at 23, waiting for her battle to be over so she could begin her life – the life she envisioned for herself. But that day never came…With 13 years between us, she was not only my precious baby sister, but the child I never had, my friend and confidant. As the months tick by, I have only begun to realize the bond we had, and the hole her passing has left in my life. In her memory, to honor her courage, and in appreciation for teaching us SO much about living and loving, and for all those still fighting, I’m participating in sports endurance events as a member of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's (LLS) Team in Training. I have, or will complete: a full marathon in Dublin, Ireland (done/Oct ‘12), the Tinker Bell Half Marathon ( done/Jan ‘13), Disneyland, California, the Inaugural Nike Women’s Half Marathon in Washington D.C. (April ‘13), and then the 10th anniversary for the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco, CA on October 20, 2013!
Like the other members of TNT, I will be raising funds to help find cures and better treatments for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma. I’m improving the quality of my life by participating, and with your support, I can help improve the quality of life for patients and their families as well.
There is not one of us who will single handedly cure cancer, but together we are part of a whole with the clear and concise mission to defeat blood cancer. That’s what the “Team” in Team in Training is about! That passion and drive, that dedication to a single purpose, gives hope to millions, not just those with blood cancer, but survivors, future patients, and their families.
I hope you'll continue to fight with me for a cure and make a (tax-deductible) donation in support of my efforts with Team In Training and help advance the research for cures.
One Donation at a Time, We're Saving Lives!
I am on a mission to raise another $11,000 by October 20, 2013
for a total of $32,000 to honor the 32 years we were blessed to have her with us.
For nearly ten years, she fought with dignity and grace, courage and laughter, love and heart. Through it all, “Love My Life” was her motto. Always ready with a smile, she spread light and love wherever she went, to whomever she met, and left behind a legacy of love to many who will miss her forever...
She didn't love having cancer, but she loved being alive and living every minute she could. Having cancer taught her, and us, just how precious life is.
Here is her story and my motivation...
Liz was diagnosed with Stage IIIb Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in August of 2002. At diagnosis, she had a tumor that was over 6” (16cm x 18 cm) across her chest wall which had wrapped itself around her trachea and the superior vena cava (the main vein in the body), and had shoved her heart slightly to the left.
After being diagnosed she received six months of chemotherapy and six weeks of radiation, but the disease came back within three months. She had an autologous stem-cell transplant (her own) in May of 2004, and for almost a year she was cancer free, but again, it came back. That would be the longest period she would ever be cancer free. There were a few “stable” periods where it was “managed”, and a few times she got to “no sign of disease”, but it always came back by her three-month checkup.
That is the extremely short version of a long ten years during which she endured unimaginable atrocities, some of which still cause us nightmares and panic attacks; but there were good periods as well, times she experienced amazing victories and was able to participate in life ~ really LIVE it. For that we are grateful, grateful they were the majority (though she was almost always under treatment).
She always had a smile for everyone, an inner light that shined, a hope that would not be extinguished. "Keep the Faith" is what she said when others would express concern.
On behalf of my entire family ~ Thank you for making a difference!
Our Angel~Liz, Myself, Mom (Sherry), & Sean (Brudder)