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A little bit about my mom and why I wage hope:

My mom was “my person,” my best friend.  The one person who I told everything to, who kept my secrets, who never judged me, and always found a way to show me she loved me.  Over these past few years, I've thought a lot about my favorite memories with my mom. So many things come to mind and they all bring a smile to my face.  From the endless ballet recitals and costumes she made for me, to the amazing gift baskets she sent every holiday to my office for all of my colleagues.  I've thought about how she still put together stockings from “Santa” for all of her grown children, and the joy she had watching us open them.  I've thought about the time when we went wedding dress shopping and laughed uncontrollably while I tried on the silliest dresses.   She loved to laugh and her smile was truly infectious.  

But truthfully, some of my favorite memories of my mom came during the final weeks of her life.  As most of you know, my dad and family spent each day with her while she was in the hospital and then in hospice.  During that time, so many people came to visit and during those visits, the things I heard about my mom were truly incredible.  I actually started to write them down.  One of her friends proclaimed that my mom was the best thing that ever happened to her.  Another friend told her that when she saw my mom across the room, she just knew she had to be friends with her because her smile just lit up the entire place. Childhood friends of mine, some of whom I had not heard from in years, wrote to me telling me what an impact my mom had on their lives.   Although I was not surprised to hear such things about my mom, because she was just that kind of person, it truly touched my heart.  But, my favorite time with my mom in those final weeks was when everyone else would go home, I would stay the night with her, and we would have very special mother/daughter time together.   During that time, we laughed a lot, we cried a lot, we hugged a lot, and we loved a lot. I am so grateful to have had that time with her. 

I still vividly remember the day my mom's doctor delivered the terrible diagnosis. Even on such a painful and confusing day, my mom’s selfless nature came shining through. Only minutes after learning she had just months to live, my mom’s doctor asked if she would like to participate in a study aimed at finding a cure. Immediately, and without hesitation, my mom answered, “Yes! It will help others.” I was in awe at her strength, and her ability to think of others at such a time.  During our final talks, my mom, selfless until the very end, encouraged me to continue the fight to cure this terrible disease. I made her that promise, and I intend to make her proud!  

Pancreatic cancer has the lowest survival rate of all major cancers, at just 10%. But when I started fundraising in 2013, it was at only 4%, so progress has been made due to the generosity of people like you!

Every dollar that you give (no matter the amount!) ensures that the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network can continue working to improve outcomes for pancreatic cancer patients.

Please join me in the fight today! 

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