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When life hands you lemons, make lemonade!

In 2007, while I was working at a tile showroom, I met Kimberly Niemela. Kim is the owner of  COSACOSA art at large, Inc. which is a non-profit organization creating new public art specific to the concerns of Philadelphia neighborhoods in direct, long-term collaboration with city residents. 12208826_10203615817275950_1439260247238446168_n

I had the opportunity to help her create the mosaic she was working on at the time.  The Mosaic was for the Oncology Department at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, based on an image of Alex’s Lemonade Stand.

I was able to find information on the artwork because the mosaic was moved in 2015.  It had been located in the playroom of the Alex Scott Day Hospital in the Wood Center, and was moved with the unit to the new Buerger Center for Advanced Pediatric Care. (more…)

FREE book by John Grisham

John Grisham says THE TUMOR is the most important book he has ever written. In this short book, he provides readers with a fictional account of how a real, new medical technology could revolutionize the future of medicine by curing with sound.

grishamGrisham, 61, lives near Charlottesville, not far from Neal Kassell, a prominent University of Virginia neurosurgeon who founded the Focused Ultrasound Foundation in 2006. They became friends, inhabiting the same social circle and wine tastings.

About eight years ago, Kassell asked Grisham to join the foundation’s board. Grisham did not know what he could I add to the board. Kassell said he could raise awareness, which leads to raising money, which leads to influence.

In 2014, the foundation spent $2.3 million on research and another $2.7 million on communications and advocacy, according to its annual report. This winter, it held two “reimbursement summits,” trying to persuade insurers to pay for the treatment.

But Grisham, wasn’t interested in pleading for cash.

A few years ago, Grisham said he had a better, more organic way to employ his fame — by writing a book about the technology. (more…)

This is not about cancer but, brain injury

In the events page you may have seen the The Run, Walk, Roll for Brain Injury.  I posted this for a friend who is a teacher at Children Hospital of Philadelphia.  She has been very active in her job helping children with brain injuries.  She even has a certification to teach children with brain injuries from The Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania.  She also runs an after school support group for children that were patients of CHOP and are now living fulfilling lives.

This event is personal for me because I had a brain injury in 1994. I was riding a dirt bike and crashed into the side of a building. In those days there was not much support for children in my situation, at least not as much as there is today.  I had no one to share in my experience, and what I was going through. I was able to join in one of her groups and share my story with children half my age. But, it was interesting to see how much support and knowledge they were given to understand himagesow their brain had changed since the injury.

The event, which will be held on April 9th will support The Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania and camp cranium.

These organizations are committed to preventing brain injury and improving the quality of life for people who have experienced brain injury.

Camp Cranium is a non-profit summer camp dedicated to providing a one-of-a-kind experience for children ages 6-18 with brain injuries. For a week each summer, children who have had a traumatic brain injury or stroke have the unique opportunity to meet other children with brain injuries in a safe, supportive, and fun environment. Campers form lasting friendships, improve their self-confidence and independence, and achieve goals they didn’t believe were possible. (more…)

Emily Whitehead: first child enrolled in T-cell therapy

Emily was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) at age five in May 2010 and relapsed twice. After the second relapse, the Whiteheads were told they were out of options to treat her cancer. Not willing to give up, the Whiteheads pursued a radical new treatment called T-cell therapy at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).

Emily was the first child enrolled in the phase I clinical trial (known as CART-19 or CTL019) in April 2012. Her T-cells (a type of white blood cell) were collected from her body, and then, in a process using a disabled form of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the T-cells were genetically reprogrammed to recognize and attack cancer cells. When the modified T-cells were put back into Emily she became very sick and spent several weeks in the intensive care unit on a ventilator. At one point her doctor said she had only a 1 in 1000 chance of surviving the night. Not only did Emily survive that night, but a few weeks later her family was given the miracle they had prayed for: the T-cell therapy worked. Doctors couldn’t detect a single cancer cell in her body. Today, Emily is nearing three years cancer free.

Emily’s story gained worldwide attention and the trial has continued to achieve unprecedented results and provide hope to many other families facing the disease. Emily and her parents, Tom and Kari, now travel to speak at events and conferences to raise awareness and share their inspirational journey.

To learn more about the foundation, donate, and find out about upcoming events and ways to get involved, visit the website: www.emilywhiteheadfoundation.org.

This post comes from www.emilywhiteheadfoundation.org.

February is Black History Month:Charles Richard Drew

charlesdrew Charles R. Drew was born on June 3, 1904, in Washington, D.C. He was an African-American physician who developed ways to process and store blood plasma in “blood banks.” He directed the blood plasma programs of the United States and Great Britain in World War II, but resigned after a ruling that the blood of African-Americans would be segregated. He died on April 1, 1950. (more…)

The Big Climb Philly: How the event came to Philadelphia

When I fiteambnyrst learned about the BIG CLIMB PHILLY, I was at an expo for the Philadelphia Marathon.  The Big Climb Philly will take place on April 23rd when participants will climb 1,092 steps to the 43rd floor of the Comcast Center in support of LLS.  The event itself is amazing, but what brought the Big Climb to Philadelphia is an even better story.

Duncan Glew, a Penn Charter ninth grader brought the idea for the Big Climb to Philadelphia.  When he was diagnosed with leukemia in 2012 he lived in Seattle and attended the Seattle County Day School.  In 2013 his school supported him by participating in the Big Climb and raising $185,000 for LLS. Soon after, Duncan was asked to be an honoree for LLS and the Seattle Big Climb. He wanted to continue to contribute as an honoree but by then he was living in Philadelphia to undergo t-cell treatment at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. (more…)

Big Climb Penn Charter Kick Off!!

Saturday, January 23rd, Tim Mahoney attended Penn Charters Cancer Conference and Big Climb Philly Kickoff.

The event was held to begin the countdown to Big Climb Philly, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s inaugural stair climb to the top of Philadelphia’s tallest skyscraper. The Comcast Center will host this April 23 fundraiser, providing an opportunity for 1,500 people to test themselves on the 43-flight event course in support of the LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.


Philly Big Climb: Climb. Conquer. Cure.


BIG CLIMB PHILLY is The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s inaugural stair climb to the top of Philadelphia’s tallest skyscraper, challenging the community to join LLS in the battle against blood cancers!

Rising 974 feet above the dynamic cityscape of Philadelphia, the Comcast Center will host this exhilarating, one-of-a-kind event, providing an opportunity for 1,500 people to test themselves on the 43-flight event course in support of the LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families.

On April 23, 2016, these fundraisers will conquer 1,092 steps and 664 feet of vertical elevation to reach the top, and fulfill our motto: Climb. Conquer. Cure.

Event Day Information

Date: April 23, 2016

Location: 1701 John F Kennedy Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Time: 8:30AM-1:30PM

Registration Fee:  $35 (until 2/29/16)

Fundraising Minimum: $109.20

Register Here to donate or to join my team: BNYMELLONKOP

Philadelphia Marathon Weekend: TNT Inspirational Dinner

My father and I attended the Philadelphia Marathon Weekend and the Team In Training Inspiration Dinner on November 21st. There were 65 Team In Training athletes participating that raised an incredible $179,000 in the fight against blood cancer. Since 2011 we raised $11,000 thanks to your contributions.

Matt Breidenstein, Campaign Manager for Team in Training, lead the inspiration dinner. I have summarized the night events for you to experience with us.

Unknown-1Here are a few reasons why raising money for LLS matters:

  • The dollars raised help ensure that blood cancer patients have access to the best available therapies and are able to understand their options and get the support they need.
  • LLS grants support more than 350 research projects in academic centers throughout the world and advance many approaches to improving outcomes for blood cancer patients. Last year alone, $79.8 million in projects focused on moving research from the laboratory into the clinic, converting compounds into drugs, and identifying novel treatment strategies.
  • LLS has helped pass laws in more than half the states guaranteeing that patients who take oral medications will get the same coverage as those who receive their chemotherapy intravenously. We are also working to ensure that patients have access to therapies and care without being forced to pay high out of pocket costs.

We all share one goal: A world without blood cancers! With your support LLS will continue to fund breakthrough therapies that are saving lives and we will continue working together to ensure that Someday is Today.

20151122_053649For each individual who attended the dinner, there was a story of courage, determination, strength and hope.

In attendance was a husband and wife duo that has raised over $130,000 for LLS.  After she was diagnosed with blood cancer 7 years ago, instead of asking why this happened to their family, they decided to do something about it and hence, their journey with TNT began.

A longtime TNT supporter ran 15 TNT events and has raised over $30,000 in memory of his wife who passed away from Lymphoma. He also raised $7,000 for his 70th birthday.

A first time TNTer and soon to be marathoner, has helped captain a team that has raised over $20,000 for LLS. After her uncle’s second diagnosis with blood cancer, she knew that it was time for her to do something more. Inspired by her uncle’s tremendous athletic accomplishments, she decided to train for her first marathon and raise funds for LLS.  She created a TEAM of friends and family for this event, all in honor of her uncle.

These stories are from a few individuals who have made it their mission to find a cure for blood cancer. Everyone there was a part of this mission.

Each group of individuals was honored for their part in the TNT TEAM. TNT Alumni, who have raised money for more than one event, Community Teams, Staff, Coaches, and the patient heroes. The Heroes were cancer survivors and those undergoing treatment. Some heroes were actually running the race, how inspiring!

The speaker for the evening was a long time LLS supporter, advocate, and blood cancer survivor, David Wolovitz.  David was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia at the age 52. At that time, CML was a death sentence to be carried out in 3-5 years. Today, he lives a full AND healthy life due to advancements in treatment made possible through LLS and fundraising efforts from people like YOU!

A moment of silence was held for our inspiration, our Honored heroes. For us it was Marie Therese Mahoney, mother and grandmother, who has lost her battle with Lymphoma on November 24th of last year.

On behalf of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, we were thanked for our efforts on achieving the vision: which is a world where; the vast majority of newly diagnosed patients will receive treatments that bring cures. And those that are not cured will be able to manage their condition with a good quality of life.

We thank YOU, that have joined our TEAM to make SOMEDAY TODAY!!


BNY 2015 Food Drive

Philabundance2015BNY Mellon took part in the 2015 Philabundance Food Drive.  This year they gathered 1,515 items for a combined total of 1,653 POUNDS.

BNY Mellon donates $.50 per item so in addition to the non-perishable items, Philabundance will also receive a check in the amount of $758.00!!

They more than doubled their donations from last year and the Community Partnership Team cannot thank them enough for their generosity!!

Tis the season of giving!  It is great to see that a company like BNY cared enough to raise so much for those in need.