On any given weekend, you can probably find a walk or run designed to benefit a worthwhile cause (see my example to the right). But on April 28 and 29, there are two such events that are near and dear to my heart.
Both were created in memory of young women who lost their lives to gynecological cancers (ovarian and cervical) and both are set-up to benefit the Women’s Cancer Center at Fox Chase. If you’re free either day – or both – I strongly encourage you to join us for a run or walk.
If you’re planning to go to either event, let us know. And if you take pictures, please send them along to email@example.com so we can post them.
Be well, Bob
Sandy Sprint: Saturday, April 28, 2012 from 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
The Sandy Rollman Ovarian Cancer Foundation is hosting its annual Sandy Sprint 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, April 28, 2012. Grab your running or walking shoes, and a leash (for your pup) and join the effort to raise funds to advance ovarian cancer research and spread the word about Sandy Rollman Foundation. Registration is $25 for adults ($30 after April 17), $40 for one adults and one dog, and $15 for children 12 and under ($20 after April 17). For more information or to register, visit www.sandysprint.kintera.org.
The Sandy Rollman Ovarian Cancer Foundation was created as a tribute to the life, character, and immense strength of Sandy Rollman. Sandy passed away from advanced ovarian cancer in May 2000. Prior to diagnosis, Sandy experienced many textbook symptoms. Her symptoms were whispering only no one was listening. The tragic result was that Sandy never had a chance against ovarian cancer.
Her sister Adriana Way and her nurse Robin Cohen decided to keep Sandy’s memory alive while trying to prevent other women from having to endure the same pain as she did. The mission of this organization is to educate both women and physicians about ovarian cancer; advocate for early diagnostic testing and more effective treatments; raise funds to advance research towards a cure; and offer support to ovarian cancer patients and their families.
Amy’s Fund: Sunday, April 29, 2012 from 7:30am until 10:30am
The 8th Annual Amy’s Fund 5K Run/Walk is in memory of a very special young woman. Shortly after she married her college sweetheart, Dave, Amy Kligge Vengels was diagnosed with cervical cancer. Amy, who was a strong athlete, wife, daughter and sister, was a fighter and tried everything to beat this disease. Amy believed in a cure and wanted to eventually raise money to support research. To ensure her legacy would live on, and in the hopes of helping others defeat this disease, Amy’s family created Amy’s Fund and organizes an annual walk/run to benefit cancer research at Fox Chase.
Join Amy’s family on April 29 to run, walk, enjoy music, face painting and a fun bus! Registration is $25 for adults, $15 for children under 12. Adults who pre-register before April 15 save $5. Selected t-shirt sizes are guaranteed to all who pre-register before April 15. Adult XL will be provided to all other registered walkers. To register and for more information, visit www.amysfund.org, call 215-632-1663 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’d like to invite you and your dog(s) to join us this Sunday, October 23, 2011 at 9:30 a.m., at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia for a very special event. Each year, hundreds of dogs and their owners participate in Paws for the Cause to support the effort to prevail over cancer. To date, the event has raised more than $115,000!
In addition to a one-mile walk around the Fox Chase campus, there are lots of other activities to enjoy, including our MC, WMGK-FM, refreshments, vendors, goody bags, contests and prizes. Enter to win the best pet costume, pet trick and dog-owner look-alike contest. Top fundraisers will also be recognized with prizes.
Register online and you can easily invite your friends and family to sponsor you and your dog. Registration is $25 per dog and includes one t-shirt ($10 for each additional shirt)
Visit dog-friendly vendors and enjoy breakfast treats and refreshments. “Ask the Vet” Oncologist: Rebecca Risbon, VMD, DACVIM, Staff Oncologist at Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center. Rebecca be available to answer questions regarding, basic canine cancer education, early signs and symptoms and overall quality of life for you and your pet.
Fox Chase welcomes students who are supporting this event, including Pet Emergency Decals by Jillian, an eighth grader who is raising money for animal welfare agencies and cancer research through her originally designed decals. Jake, another talented eighth grader will draw pictures of your pooch on the spot. Donations are welcome and will be donated to Fox Chase in honor of his grandmother.
Pennsylvania SPCA Adoption Truck – meet animals available for adoption. Participants are invited to bring much-needed items for animal welfare agencies, including Animal Lifeline and WAGS Animal Rescue.
If you can’t attend, but want to get involved, vote for your favorite dog on Facebook!
I hope you’ll consider joining us next Sunday!
National Ovarian Cancer Coalition (NOCC)
Delaware Valley Chapter’s
13th Annual 5K Run/Walk & 1.5 Mile Walk to
Break the Silence on Ovarian Cancer
Saturday, September 10, 2011 Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park, Philadelphia
Please join Team Fox Chase on Saturday (the forecast is for sunny skies), at the 13th annual NOCC walk, and first ever 5K run, on a USATF Certified Course through Fairmount Park! Awards will be given to first place overall male and female finishers, and medals to top 5 male and female finishers, the “Top Docs,” top overall Survivor finisher and top individual and team fundraisers.
Fox Chase Cancer Center is pleased to be a premier sponsor of this special event. And yours truly will be delivering the key note speech. Join the Fox Chase team now!
While you’re there, please visit the Survivor Tent, Kids Tent, Health Fair Tent, food and beverages, special guest speakers and live entertainment. Proceeds raised from all activities benefit the Chapter’s awareness & education programs. You won’t want to miss this event!
The Run/Walk to Break the Silence on Ovarian Cancer is the largest awareness event for the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition. Organized by local Chapter volunteers, this event celebrates our survivors, remembers those we’ve lost to ovarian cancer and increases awareness about the disease.
If you have questions, please contact the Delaware Valley Chapter at (215) 997-8075 or email@example.com
On-line registration is now closed, however registration is available on the day of the event. We look forward to seeing you!
Cathy Garry, pictured here in Ocean City, NJ, with her husband, James, was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003 and began treatment at a community hospital near her home. Just four years later, in 2007, Cathy learned she had a second cancer diagnosis – cervical cancer. Although the cancer initially went into remission, she experienced a recurrence in the fall of 2008. That is when she and her family sought the medical expertise at Fox Chase Cancer Center. Unfortunately, the cancer was very aggressive and following a courageous and inspirational fight, Cathy passed away in September 2009.
I had the pleasure of getting to know Cathy in 2008 when my colleagues and I treated her for her recurrence. She was a very special woman. Her family believes that those who met Cathy knew what a caring and compassionate individual she was. I couldn’t agree more.
Her family shares, “During her time at Fox Chase Cancer Center she received the best care possible. The staff of doctors and nurses at Fox Chase cannot be described in words. They are the most caring and compassionate professionals that you can deal with during the most difficult and trying time a family can go through. We cannot say enough about the quality of care our mother received while at Fox Chase.”
Her family continues, “Though she is physically is no longer with us, Cathy’s love and kindness continue to live on in all those that knew her.” Cathy’s three children and their spouses established Cathy’s Kids, a non-profit foundation that honors the memory of a loving wife, mother and friend.
The mission of the Cathy’s Kids Foundation is to provide comfort and joy to children currently dealing with the effects of cancer. The organization strongly embraces the idea that HOPE is the best weapon against cancer. Ring a bell? Love Versus Cancer … maybe so!
The foundation holds an annual Cathy Garry Memorial Golf Tournament to raise funds to send a family affected by cancer to Walt Disney World. For more information about the foundation or to make a donation, visit www.golfforcathy.com.
Despite three bouts with cancer, she never complained about her own situation or health. Cathy’s focus in life was always the well-being of others. They appreciate your support in keeping her caring and compassionate spirit alive. Cathy would be touched to know that children were being helped in her name.
As always, your support, generosity, and prayers are greatly appreciated!
Watch Cathy’s video here:
The bond between five sisters can be unbreakable, especially when tragedy strikes. In 1990, Tyanna Barre O’Brien, 48, lost her courageous battle with breast cancer – and five girls lost their mother.
Several years later, when each was living on her own, Anne, Bridget, Megan, Sara and Kate O’Brien decided to establish a fund to honor their mother’s life, love and living legacy. In 1999, The Tyanna Foundation was founded and its signature event, BreastFest, was launched.
Since its inception in Athens, Georgia, The Tyanna Foundation has operated solely by the generous support of volunteers who have worked tirelessly to increase awareness of breast cancer and generate funds to support breast cancer research, services, education, treatment and patient care for local breast cancer patients and survivors.
By expanding its reach into four states (Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey and Pennsylvania), BreastFest has raised over one million dollars to help local organizations treat and care for breast cancer patients. All of the funds raised in each city benefit a local breast center or breast health organization.
All proceeds for the Philadelphia chapter of The Tyanna Foundation are donated to the Breast Center at Fox Chase Cancer Center. In its first year in Philadelphia, The Tyanna Foundation and BreastFest raised over $13,000 for Fox Chase, which was dedicated to research and a survivors series.
Join Tyanna’s Daughters on September 17 in Philadelphia
After a very successful launch into the Philadelphia area in 2010, the second annual BreastFest Philly has been scheduled for Saturday, September 17, 2011, at Mad River Bar & Grille in Philadelphia’s Manayunk neighborhood located at 4100 Main Street, Philadelphia.
Beginning at 3:00pm, guests will enjoy live music performed by Loverbuggy, Alice’s Garage, Northern Rednecks, Sara O’Brien and Stellar Mojo. There will be plenty of food, drinks, raffles and silent auction items. The event ends at 8:00pm.
Tickets are $40 in advance, $50 at the door and all proceeds benefit breast cancer research, treatment and prevention programs at Fox Chase. For more information, or to purchase your tickets, visit www.breastfest.org or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Pre-Party Event on August 25
If you happen to be in Philadelphia on August 25 instead of the Jersey Shore, you’re in luck! The Tyanna Foundation is “Painting Manayunk Pink!” The gang will gather at Mad River – check their Facebook page for details.
I wish the O’Brien sisters all the best with their terrific event. For more information on other events held to benefit Fox Chase Cancer Center, visit our online calendar – and join us on Facebook! If you are inspired to plan your own fundraiser, let us know. We have staff to help get you started. Contact Jamie Roche in the Institutional Advancement Department at 215-728-2531.
As always, thanks for your support.
Be well, Bob
On Sunday, June 5, 2011, more than 600 cancer survivors and their loved ones headed to Fox Chase Cancer Center – but this time, it was for fun. To commemorate National Cancer Survivors Day, Fox Chase’s Board of Associates held its annual food-tasting event, Plain & Fancy, with a special focus on survivorship this year.
The survivorship program took place in the Center’s Auditorium, hosted by Joseph A. Frick, the former President and CEO of Independence Blue Cross, and a Fox Chase colon cancer survivor. Many folks in the audience related to the stories Mr. Frick shared about his experience. In the room next door, Carrie Flower invited younger guests into a nearby room for a live show and book reading.
Next, Mr. Frick introduced Kim Hagerich, honorary chair of the event, and a Fox Chase breast cancer survivor. Kim not only dealt with cancer herself, but she watched her mother fight the disease and eventually lose her life to cancer. Through her journey, this young mother and wife became a patient advocate and established a local chapter of the Young Survival Coalition.
The program ended with the CHASE Awards, which represent Courage, Heart, Advocacy, Service and Education with regards to survivorship. Awards were presented to Crystal Denlinger, MD, medical oncologist; The Breathing Room; and Janet Engstrom, of Fox Chase’s Board of Associates.
Guests filed out of the auditorium and headed straight to the sunny courtyard where two tents were lined with tables featuring a variety of dishes from local restaurants. Joyful music filled the air, performed by the Ken Ulansey Ensemble. The Phillie Phanatic entertained both children and adults alike. Survivors and their friends and family connected with others, which made the event meaningful for everyone.
As the celebration ended, several children gathered in the newly dedicated survivors garden and planted daisies, which you can see in the following three-minute photo montage, which highlights the celebration.
We hope your summer is off to a wonderful start and hope to see you at next year’s cancer survivors celebration!
Cheryl Herman has a positive attitude for life. This was especially evident when she established a special fund at Fox Chase Cancer Center in tribute to her beloved sister, Eileen Stein Jacoby.
In 1996, at the age of 42, Eileen had a routine mammogram. Her doctor detected a pea-sized mass of cells that would later turn out to be breast cancer – ductal carcinoma. After a three-year struggle with the disease, this mother, sister, daughter, wife and friend passed away.
A year after Eileen’s passing, Cheryl and her family decided to turn a very negative event in their lives into something positive. Cheryl threw her energies into developing The Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund as a lasting tribute to her sister’s life.
With tremendous support from her husband Scott, her children, Justin and Jillian, her parents Harold and Pauline Stein, her brother and sister in-law, Mitch and Julie Stein, and niece and nephew Alison and Evan Epstein, The Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund at Fox Chase Cancer Center was established in 2000.
Small but mighty, The Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund has achieved a tremendous amount during its first decade.The fund supports a talented research team and its fundraising efforts have had a tremendous impact on their work. The fund initially supported the laboratory of molecular biologist and geneticist, Andrew Godwin, PhD (who has since left the institution). The fund sponsored Dr. Xiaowei Chen (pictured at podium above) when he first joined Dr. Godwin’s laboratory in 2002. Dr. Chen’s studies examine the hereditary and non-hereditary factors that influence an individual’’s risk of developing breast cancer and theirs response to therapy.
The Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund is run completely by volunteers. Every penny that they have raised over the years has gone solely toward cancer research.
The many fundraising activities organized by Cheryl and her army of committee members and volunteers have included an annual bowling benefit, golf outing, shopping sprees and special events at various businesses, holiday gift-wrapping at a local mall, sporting event trips, breast cancer apparel sales, trips to Broadway shows, breast cancer awareness events for students, charity concerts, square dances and more!
Cheryl and Scott’s daughter, Jillian, is the student volunteer coordinator for the fund and was recently honored with a philanthropy award at her high school. Their son, Justin, is enrolled in medical school in Philadelphia.
Fox Chase’s Joanne Hambleton, vice president of nursing and patient services, has a unique perspective when it comes to the cancer experience. As a nurse here for the last 21 years, she has supported and fostered the provision of compassionate care to countless patients and their family members. Then, she had the opportunity to see Fox Chase from the perspective of these patients as she was diagnosed with breast cancer and treated here in 2004. As both a patient and caregiver, Joanne has consistently been inspired by one abiding quality: hope. This year she will have the honor of hosting the 21st annual Tree of Life Ceremony—a beautiful event that celebrates the role of hope in the cancer journey. I have invited her to tell you more about this special evening, which will take place on Wednesday, December 8th at 5:30 p.m.
I hope you’ll consider joining me next week at the Tree of Life Ceremony, which will bring together Fox Chase patients, caregivers, researchers, volunteers, medical staff and friends to honor lost loved ones, give thanks for the compassionate care of staff, and recognize all those touched by cancer. This 21-year-old tradition is a beautiful way to honor the memory of all those who have fought or are currently being treated for cancer.
I encourage you to check out the video below, in which I share some brief remarks at a special tea held on November 8th announcing this year’s Tree of Life Ceremony. You will see snapshots of ceremonies from years past and you will hear from kidney cancer survivor Daniel Wolfson, a generous supporter of Fox Chase, about what his care here meant to him.
All of us at Fox Chase embrace cancer’s challenges on a daily basis. We are united together with the common purpose of supporting each other and providing a powerful source of care, compassion, and support to our friends and neighbors in need.
We will kick off the evening in the Fox Chase cafeteria, where I will speak along with Dara Barr, a cancer survivor, and Dr. Michael Levy, director of the Pain and Palliative Care Program at Fox Chase. You can enjoy light refreshments as a performance by the Abington Choral Club follows. To conclude the evening, we will have a tree lighting ceremony in the Fox Chase courtyard.
The Tree of Life will remain ablaze in the courtyard throughout the holiday season with lights representing hope. It is a shining symbol of what we can achieve—of how far we’ve come and yet how far we still have to go until the day that cancer will no longer claim the lives of our patients, families, friends and neighbors.
Please consider showing your support for all those touched by cancer by attending this moving ceremony, which is free and open to the public. Another excellent way to show your support—even if you can’t attend—is to make a Tree of Life contribution. Your donation will support life sustaining research, compassionate treatment, and critical patient support programs.
To learn more about this wonderful event, or to make a donation, please visit http://www.fccc.edu/helpingFoxChase/campaigns/treeOfLife/. You can also download and print out a paper leaf on which to write a note or dedication. We will proudly display the leaves throughout the cafeteria for all to see.
If you can make it to the event on December 8th, please stop by and introduce yourself!
Wednesday, December 8th, 5:30 p.m.
Fox Chase Cancer Center cafeteria
333 Cottman Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19111
Here at Fox Chase, we’re constantly amazed by the incredible ways that family and friends of cancer patients choose to support and honor their loved ones. Equally inspiring are the ways that these people – regardless of their age – can make a difference in their communities.
I’d like to share with you a special story about how one patient’s experience inspired her daughter to make a difference in the breast cancer community by organizing a successful fundraiser for teens and their moms. Her work also resulted in the public recognition of the doctor who not only treated her mom, but who has made a positive impact in the lives of women throughout the Delaware Valley.
This is the story of Barbara Davis and her daughter Eliza, presented by Barbara’s doctor Marcia Boraas, MD, a surgical oncologist who recently returned to Fox Chase. We hope you find it as inspiring as we do.
Last November, I had the great honor of being recognized for “Outstanding Devotion to the Breast Health of the Women of the Delaware Valley” at the first annual “Tickled Pink” event sponsored by Susan G. Komen for the Cure. The event—a gala featuring an auction and survivor fashion show—was planned and launched by Teens for the Cure, a junior chapter of the local Komen affiliate that was founded by Eliza Davis, the youngest daughter of my patient Barbara.
I first met Barbara when she developed breast cancer in 2003 and I performed her surgery here at Fox Chase. Inspired by Barbara’s experience overcoming cancer, Eliza launched a Philadelphia chapter of Teens for the Cure and rallied friends and supporters to organize the area’s first Tickled Pink event. The highly successful event was attended by over 400 guests and raised an impressive $110,000 for Komen. Just as importantly, it offered breast cancer survivors, their families and friends the opportunity to come together and celebrate.
Most women with breast cancer are treated successfully, which is why offering hopeful care to my patients is one of the most rewarding aspects of my work at Fox Chase. Eliza and Barbara’s story reflects the importance of hope, and shows how an experience that is initially frightening—a breast cancer diagnosis—can turn into a source of inspiration and positive change.
I sincerely hope you’ll consider joining Barbara, Eliza, my daughter, Elisabeth and myself at this year’s Tickled Pink, which will be held at the National Constitution Center on Friday, November 19, 2010.
All the best,
Marcia Boraas, MD
To learn more about this year’s Tickled Pink and to buy tickets (available through November 1), click here.