Xan Harwood-Karlik Purples Strides: Yes We Xan
Dear Family and Friends,
Thank you all for your support of our beloved Xan and the YES WE XAN team. We hope you will join us again this year for our 5th Purple Stride PDX walk on September 28, 2019. Whether you walk side-by-side with us in PDX or virtually, your love and support are critical to helping Xan stay strong as he continues to fight this disease.
2019 has been a very challenging year for Xan.
In late February, Xan developed headaches which became excruciating while we were on a kiteboarding vacation in Mexico. Upon returning to Portland, we headed straight to the OHSU emergency room where an MRI confirmed metastases in his brain. Xan had a successful craniotomy in early March followed by radiation. Unfortunately, he had a recurrence this summer and had to endure three more craniotomies. Never one to let anything keep him down, Xan returned to work within days of each surgery. He is the strongest person I know.
PanCan has been by our side throughout ~ in March, Xan participated in the Know Your Tumor program a second time with tissue from the brain tumor. This is especially significant both for Xan and for researchers because less than 1% of pancreatic cancer patients develop brain metastases and also because young adults with pancreatic cancer often do not have the KRAS or BRCA gene mutations so learning what works in Xan’s treatment helps young adults all over the world. When Xan had his recurrence this summer (and 3 more craniotomies!), PanCan’s Patient Services staff provided us with information and resources. In June, Sara participated in PanCan Advocacy Days in Washington, DC. While there she met a physician/researcher from MD Anderson who was particularly interested in Xan. Thanks to this connection, Xan and Sara will be meeting with physicians at MD Anderson in the coming weeks. We treasure all that PanCan has provided our family, and so many other families.
Xan does not have the luxury of quitting. Please don’t get tired of supporting us. The funds raised support PanCan’s critical research grants and patient support.
Please join us again this year in raising our voices and funds for further research and new treatment options by joining the YES WE XAN team and making a generous donation. Last year, we raised over $13,000, money that went directly to research and patient services. My personal goal this year is $9,000. Our YES WE XAN team goal is $15,000. Please help give the gift of life to Xan and every other pancreatic cancer survivor.
Xan, Sara, Kevin and I look forward to walking with you (either in person or virtually) on September 28th.
With deep gratitude, Lucy (Xan’s mom)