Thursday, July 28, 2011

The 2011 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk

A few weeks ago I asked Lawhawk to place a widget on this page to donate to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk. The Light the Night Walk is the oldest walk to raise money for cancer research and patient care. For those who have not attended one, the Light the Night Walk is an inspirational event, where thousands of people walk holding colored balloons with lights (red to honor someone, white for survivors and gold in memory of a loved one.)

Last year, I became personally involved with the LLS when my wife, while 29 weeks pregnant with our second child, was diagnosed with a rare form of Non-Hodgkin’s disease called Primary Mediastinum B-Cell Lymphoma. Essentially, a 10-centimeter mass had grown in her chest, above the lung, next to the heart and was effecting her breathing and blood flow. Because of the size of the mass, she required immediate treatment. She received two rounds of chemotherapy while pregnant, gave birth to our son at just shy of 36 weeks, and then continued for 4 additional rounds of chemo, followed by 17 rounds of radiation.

Since her diagnosis, both of us have become involved with the LLS. The LLS provides funding for research, support for patients who cannot afford medication, as well as patient and care-giver counseling and information. LLS is proud that over 72% of every dollar received goes directly toward the mission: To cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. However, the statistics are startling:

Every 5 Minutes: Someone in the United States learns that he or she has leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease or myeloma.
Every 10 Minutes: Another child or adult is expected to die from a blood cancer.

Without support from the LLS, drugs like Rituxan (one of the main drugs in my wife’s regiment) and Gleevec (dubbed the “miracle drug” for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia) may never have hit the market. Thanks to the LLS, and support from its donors, people who cannot afford these drugs receive financial support. Patients, families and care-givers, have a place to turn for information, support or just someone to talk to.

Thankfully, for us the treatments worked. My wife is now in remission and our son, who just turned one, suffered no ill-effects from the chemo. She has also been honored by being selected as one of the 2011 Honored Heroes ( From what I was told by members of the selection committee, she was a unanimous, and virtually instantaneous, selection.

If any of you are so inclined, donations to the Light the Night Walk can be made through the link on the top left of the page, or by going to Any amount of support is greatly appreciated.

For more information on the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society please go to

For more information on the Light the Night Walk, to join a walk in your area or to see a message from this year’s Ambassador, Michael C. Hall (himself a Hodgkin’s Lymphoma survivor), please go to

Thank you for your support.

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