Edgar: I lost my mother, Enedelia Lopez, to cancer when I was only 2 years old. Sadly, because I was so young, I don’t have any memories of her. It has always been very hard for me to talk about my Mom and growing up it was difficult to understand why she couldn’t be with me. After my mom passed away, I was raised by my grandmother. I am very blessed to have a large extended family of eight aunts and uncles who all did their part to help raise me. They all instilled in me values that remain a part of who I am today. I am forever grateful for my family.
Like many families all over the world, cancer unfortunately runs in ours. In addition to my mom, my grandfather also passed away from cancer when I was in high school. My grandmother and aunt are cancer survivors. Whenever it’s time for a family member to have a checkup, I always experience anxiety. I know because of my family history how important it is to take care of myself so that I become less likely to succumb any type of cancer. I also know that education and early detection is critical. For these reasons, I have chosen to support MD Anderson Cancer Center Houston, an institution that I have always thought of as being at the forefront of cancer research. The mission of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center is to eliminate cancer in Texas, the nation, and the world through outstanding programs that integrate patient care, research and prevention, and through education for undergraduate and graduate students, trainees, professionals, employees and the public.
As an adult, I have come to realize the true hardships my mother and grandmother faced while my mom was in the hospital undergoing her treatments. I can’t help but wonder, if cancer research and treatments were more advanced 32 years ago when my mom was sick, would she still be with me today? I support MD Anderson in their fight against cancer so that no other child will be left without a mother and that families everywhere don’t have to worry about which member of their family will fall victim to cancer next. Please consider donation to MD Anderson Cancer Center. Your donation supports innovative cancer research, patient care, and education and prevention programs.
Jennifer: My maternal grandmother, Olivia Orozco, lost her battle with pancreatic cancer in August 2006. Grandma Olivia was a strong, hard-working, single mom of eight. She was a no-nonsense woman with a sassy personality (the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree!). I was shocked when Grandma Olivia received her pancreatic cancer diagnosis. I didn’t know much about cancer, especially how aggressive pancreatic cancer was. My mom spent weeks and months traveling to and from West Texas to take care of her mom and take her to various doctors. Only months after she received her cancer diagnosis, Grandma’s health began to rapidly decline. Always wanting to do things on her terms, Grandma Olivia chose to spend the rest of her days in the comfort of her home. A few weeks before she passed away, I went to Lubbock to visit her. I will never forget how I felt when I saw the devastating impact that the cancer had on her body. The time I had with her then was precious to me. It was so difficult to leave at the end of that trip knowing that would be the last time I saw her. After Grandma Olivia passed away, my mom told me that her heart was broken. That memory still makes me very emotional to this day, even as I write this story.
We are supporting MD Anderson Cancer Center in the hopes that other families don’t have to experience the heartache that comes with losing a loved one to cancer. Please consider donating to MD Anderson to help us fight this cruel illness.