Frank with the Iowa Chrome Domes
As the person who introduced St. Baldrick’s to the state of Iowa in 2006, I felt it was important to lead by example and be a shavee. I was familiar with St Baldrick’s from my New York days and knew that the generous people of Iowa would be great supporters once they became familiar with the history, economics and mission of St Baldrick’s.
My motivation at that point was supporting the great things St. Baldrick’s was doing to help children stricken unfairly by the ravages of cancer. A couple of years later it became personal when my nephew, Chris, was diagnosed with medulloblastoma.
I was there as Chris underwent surgery in Kansas City, during which they removed most, but not all, of his tumor. Then he was sent to Columbia Presbyterian in New York City for radiation and chemotherapy treatment. He was told that, had he arrived there 10 years earlier, they would have sent him home, as there would have been no treatment available to save him. During that 10-year period, children’s cancer research had uncovered new treatments, and they were able to help him.
It was a very tough, long road, but he was treated successfully and returned to college. Knowing that Chris’ life was saved — and that he is still with us — motivates me even more to raise funds for St Baldrick’s.
Who knows? Today or tomorrow some sick child may appear at a hospital and be told that new treatments, previously unavailable, were developed due to St. Baldrick’s childhood cancer research funding, and — just like Chris — that child can now be cured.
It gives me goosebumps to think that some of that funding came from my team, Iowa Chrome Domes — or one of the other five Iowa events that will be held this year.
I will likely be leaving Iowa in the future after I retire in May. No matter what else I may have done in my 13 years here, the thing I am most proud of is that I, with the help of a great, hardworking team, and a wonderful, generous employer, got St Baldrick’s started in Iowa. It has succeeded beyond all my expectations, and I am very grateful to have played a part!
Follow Frank’s lead and bring St. Baldrick’s to your community!