This Saturday the kids are joining with tens of thousands of people in communities across America and running to end pancreatic cancer.
This PurpleStride event is one of over fifty events to raise awareness about the critical mission of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.
These events contribute millions of dollars to advance research, support patients and create hope.
The funds raised through these events help provide personalized support for pancreatic cancer patients and support research grants and advocacy efforts to increase federal pancreatic cancer research funding.
When Kaleb and Kenzie were one-year-old and three-months old, they came to live with my wife, Diane (Nanna), and me. Just a little over a year later Diane was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer.
Over the next several months Diane endured agonizing trips to the cancer center and numerous chemotherapy treatments that, at best, promised to add only a few months to her life. But the grip of pancreatic cancer couldn’t be loosened and just eight months after the diagnosis she was gone from our lives!
Diane died at home surrounded by family and friends. She left behind three children and their spouses, six grandchildren (two of whom she was raising), and a loving husband of almost thirty years.
Six months after Diane had succumbed to pancreatic cancer, her sister, Donna, was diagnosed with Stage 3 pancreatic cancer. After most of a year spent in surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation treatments, Donna was given hope that she had beaten cancer when tests indicated no evidence of cancer. But soon the cancer reappeared and was advancing.
Since there were no effective treatment options that offered a cure, Donna chose not to reduce the quality of the life she had left by suffering through even more of the devastating physical and mental effects of chemotherapy treatment. Six months later Donna died at home and her life ended just as she lived, embraced by the love of her family and friends.
Donna also left behind a loving husband of almost forty years, three children and their spouses, and nine grandchildren.
When you add it all up, between these two sisters and because of pancreatic cancer, eight families now have no wife, mother, and grandmother to nurture them. Fifteen grandchildren will grow up not knowing how wonderful they were to their Nannas. Six daughters and sons have no mother to encourage them. Two husbands have no wife to love them.
Kaleb and Kenzie are running so pancreatic cancer won’t take other Nanna’s from their grandchildren. If you would like to help them win this race, you can go to our Donation Page and give a credit card gift of $5, $10, $15 or $20 (or more!) to support pancreatic cancer research..