Where does all the money go? I asked that same question when I started on this fundraising and training endeavor over 6 months ago. As I am coming up on my final weekend of fundraising prior to my half-marathon on 11/15, I wanted to tell you a little story about where the money raised through LLS goes and how those funds may help a friend or family member.
It’s hard to say that my daughter Allison has a single best friend, as she has her mother’s personality and general likability; nevertheless, one of her best friend’s mom is the reason for me telling this story. This story is about a close family friend Sara Winterhoff and how her treatment and success is a beacon of hope for all that struggle with various forms of blood cancers.
A few years back Sara was going through a cycle where she was feeling perpetually tired. She naturally attributed it to recently having her second child. It wasn’t until she noticed some odd veins protruding out of her chest that she started to have concerns. Her next step was a visit to a vascular surgeon, which is where her life quickly changed.
The vascular surgeon performed a CT scan and quickly noticed a large tumor in Sara’s chest. After a litany of tests over the next few days, she was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Two days after that, treatment began. Talk about a quick turn of events. Within four days of the initial symptoms triggering her visit to the doctor, Sara was undergoing chemo treatments and would spend the next six months aggressively fighting her lymphoma.
One of the medications Sara took during her treatment was Rituximab. In Sara’s own words, “we were told that this drug was the new game changer for my particular type of cancer.” It’s because of investments in research into the causes of lymphoma and other blood cancers that drugs like this exist. Without the investment there would be no medicine, and the race for a cure would continue to be a distant dream.
This is my last weekend of fundraising. I have miraculously raised $3000 towards blood cancer research. Help me make my last push this weekend so that the next miracle drug or even a cure is right around the corner. Please check out my donation site for additional information and where you can make a 100% tax-deductible donation to a great organization. Even a small donation helps contribute to additional research that will help find the next miracle drug that will continue to increase the overall survival rates.
Luckily for all of us, this story has a happy ending. Sara will celebrate being 5 years cancer-free in March of 2015.
Keep up the good fight and I’ll keep running for a cure.