Saturday, March 24, 2012

Dear Friends and Family,
As we head off to Sanibel Island this weekend, I cannot help but remember that it was ten years ago this weekend, on March 25, 2002, that we discovered a lump on our daughter Lilly's abdomen.

After six grueling hours in the ER at Ft. Myers, we learned our 3-year-old baby girl had kidney cancer. We raced home to Chicago where she had her kidney and the tumor removed and received six months of chemo and radiation at Chicago Children's Memorial Hospital.

To express our gratitude to the hospital and our happiness that Lilly is ten years cancer-free, we would like to have a mini-fundraiser here online to benefit the Patient Emergency Fund at Children's Memorial.
During that grueling time, we were SO grateful to have a place like Children's Memorial that we could drive to easily for world-class care. Just a half hour away we were able to drive down for the day on treatment days and be in our own beds at night. And we were fortunate that our insurance paid for it all.

I cannot imagine going through what we did AND having to worry about getting to the hospital, where to stay, what to do with the other kids, and how to pay for it all. But that is just what many families face and I saw many of them. As if the pediatric oncology ward isn't sad enough, I would watch families numbly talking to the social worker about how they might get help paying for diapers or a place to stay.

One family in particular broke my heart. They had come from out of the country --having already lost one child to cancer they hoped to save another--leaving two more children at home in the care of a grandmother. I remember watching the social worker discretely hand them Target Gift cards so they could afford some basics.

I have since learned that the Target cards and similar gifts come from a fund called the Patient Emergency Fund that is financed solely by donations. It is to this account I hope you will consider giving in honor of Lilly.

Today Lilly is a completely healthy, lovely, sassy 13-year-old thanks to her successful treatment at Children's Memorial Hospital.

If Lilly has ever made you smile, then please click on this link and make a donation. Even a small amount would be appreciated.

If you prefer to mail a check you can send one to the address below. Just include Lilly's name on the memo line so they know :

Children’s Memorial Hospital
Attn: Katie Green
2300 Children’s Plaza
Box 4
Chicago, IL 60614

For all you have done. For all you do. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
Judy and Jeff


  1. As Lilly's grateful grandparents,
    ....Of course you can count on us.

  2. Children's is a wonderful facility! Samantha was treated for scoliosis there. The staff is wonderful and all they do for children is amazing.....

  3. Hi I’m Heather! Please email me when you get a chance! I have a question about your blog. HeatherVonsj(at)gmail(dot)com