Michelle Oesterle

  • Father's Day 2005 - my last one with my dad and the day I told him I was pregnant.

    Father's Day 2005 - my last one with my dad and the day I told him I was pregnant.

Michelle Oesterle


Raised: $251

Goal: $6,880

Welcome to My Page for My Dad

Before August 25, 2005, I had no idea what pancreatic cancer was. I didn't even know what the pancreas did. And now I know all too well. My life turned upside down on August 25, the day my dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He was 52. I was 27. And pregnant with his first grandchild. How could this be happening? Just two months earlier, I was sharing the news that I was pregnant and my dad's eyes filled with tears of joy. Now my eyes fill with tears of pain, loss, and heartache over the death of my dad. Pancreatic cancer sucks. There's no other way to put it. It turned my rough and tough (yet extremely loving) dad from the Bronx into a person who slowly deteriorated before my eyes. There are no words to express what it's like for a Daddy's girl to watch her dad suffer. My dad fought. He wanted so badly to meet his grandson. But he could no longer fight and on December 8, 2005, exactly two months before my due date, I stood by his bedside as he took his last breath.

So now I volunteer. I even changed careers. I raise money and awareness. I do all I can to ensure that no other daughter has to go through what I did. So that no more children have to know their grandpa only through pictures and stories. Brian and Madelyn will never love my dad the way they would had they gotten the chance to know him, and that breaks my heart and soul. It's unacceptable to me so I will not stop until progress is made. Thank you for supporting my efforts. For Mike Plata. Always.

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Michelle's Achievements

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About PanCAN PurpleStride

Local action. Nationwide impact. This is PanCAN PurpleStride, the ultimate walk to end pancreatic cancer.

On Saturday, April 27, 2024, at nearly 60 events across the country, pancreatic cancer survivors, families, caregivers, researchers and supporters will join together and walk to honor everyone affected by the disease.

PurpleStride is PanCAN's signature community celebration, raising money to fight pancreatic cancer on all fronts — through research, clinical initiatives, patient services, advocacy and nationwide volunteer support. Learn more.