I owe my life to cancer research. At 15 I was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma. It was 1981, and I was told it was the "best" cancer to get at the time, but that 10 years earlier it would have been a death sentence. In those 10 years, new treatments had flipped the survival rate from around 10% to 90%. 15 years later, My amazing doctor at the University of Washington, affiliated with Fred Hutch and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, learned that studies were showing Hodgkin survivors were developing breast cancer at a noticably high rate later in life, and I began a high-risk follow up schedule. 15 years later, that risk turned into reality and I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012. By then, I was able to follow a tried and true treatment pattern, and from the moment breast cancer was even suspected, I was assured that all would be fine. And it was. I feel so lucky to live where I do and to have been born in a time when so much research is being done to save people like me -- twice!
The love of my friends and family is my greatest gift, so for my birthday this year, I hope at least a few of you will join me in support of cures.
I care about ending cancer because too many people still lose loved ones to this disease.
I believe in Fred Hutch because scientists there are leading the charge to prevent, diagnose, and treat cancer. For example, Hutch researchers are harnessing the immune system to fight tumors. They are developing new treatments for people who once had no options. And they are finding new ways to use more and better data to improve care. Together, their work is improving countless lives and bringing the Hutch closer to their ultimate goal: cures for most, if not all, cancers.
I want to end cancer, and I’m sure you do, too. Let’s invest in the world-changing science that will get us there. Together, we can help more people spend more time — and more wonderful birthdays — with the people they love.
Please join me and donate today. Thank you!
Did you know...
Bone marrow transplantation, which has helped more than 1 million people, was pioneered by Dr. E. Donnall Thomas at Fred Hutch. His insight earned him a Nobel Prize and provided the first example of the human immune system’s power to fight cancer.
Drs. Phil Greenberg and Stanley Riddell are continuing Don’s legacy, leading the way in the game-changing field of immunotherapy. They are perfecting an approach that could render chemotherapy and radiation obsolete, making cancer treatment less grueling.
Dr. Denise Galloway’s research paved the way for a groundbreaking vaccine that prevents human papillomavirus, or HPV — a common infection that can cause cervical and head and neck cancers. A vaccine for some cancers? Yes. It started at Fred Hutch.
Today, Hutch scientists are partnering with experts in technology and data science to put data to work: turning patterns and trends into insights to help us prevent cancer, personalize treatment, and find new ways to stop this disease.