Our team is raising money in support of Pancreatic Cancer Action Network by participating in PurpleStride.
We do this in memory of our mom, Laura, who passed away thirteen days after her diagnosis. Eighteen months before she suffered a massive stroke. She had her first shot of insulin that day. I remember asking the nurse why mom was getting insulin and the nurse gave me a look that said "duh" and said "because she's diabetic. I said, she's been diabetic for a few years (six) and she's had it controlled by diet, not insulin. Why is she getting insulin now, when she has not eaten for over twenty hours? The nurse ignored me. I look back at this as mom's first symptom of pancreatic cancer. Over the eighteen months of coming back from her stroke, she got stronger, she was able to help get herself up out of the wheelchair. Her alertness came back, her voice inflection came back. She also became more outspoken about things that were bothering her. Namely, upper abdominal and upper back pain. The doctors she was seeing said it was from the stroke, being in a wheelchair, from not having much abdominal strength. No one looked outside the box of "known issues". No one saw it until her appetite decreased and the 'flu' was ruled out as the reason.
The doctor who eventually diagnosed her, said it had been there for at least ten years. We were not given the "four words" of "She has pancreatic cancer". We were given the six words "She has advanced metastatic pancreatic cancer". When asked the doctor responded, "She may see Christmas, but realistically you're looking at a couple weeks".
Since her passing, we have had friends succumb to this cancer, and friends who have had family succumb. Our fundraising and awareness campaign is in all of their memories: our friend Paul, our friend Shirley's husband; our friend Mary Anne's father. We also fundraise for those who have yet to be diagnosed. So we can make a change for the future. We WAGE HOPE for the future.
By making a donation to our team, you are supporting efforts to double survival for this deadly disease by 2020. When mom was diagnosed, survival for five years was at 5% for quite some time (before that it was 4% for decades). Today, it's at 9%. We hope to make the five year survival rise to 12% by 2020.
Please make a donation today and help us reach our fundraising team goal.