Sunday, April 15, 2012

For the sake of good

As the father of two children who died in the womb, in addition to my two living children, I know more than a little bit about what it feels like to lose a child. Still, I can not fathom how my friend Andrea felt last December 29th.

That was the day she went to the hospital, in labor, expecting to welcome her daughter Elizabeth to the world. But tragically, Elizabeth was born without a heartbeat. In Andrea’s own words, she and her husband “said hello and goodbye to our beautiful baby girl in the same breath.”

I have been to some heart-wrenching funerals in my life and none were more wrenching than Elizabeth’s. Even the coldest-hearted person on Earth would have been moved looking at her picture and her tiny casket.

On April 28th, the March of Dimes is hosting the March for Babies here in Tampa, as well as in many other cities. The money it raises (more than two billion dollars since 1970) goes to programs that “help moms have healthy, full-term pregnancies” and to “research to find answers to the problems that threaten our babies.” Andrea has started a team, Walking for Elizabeth, that will be participating in the walk in Tampa; and as of this moment the team has already raised more than $5,500.

If you are in the Tampa area I encourage you to join us (I will be walking too) on the 28th. If you are elsewhere, you may go here to find out if there is a walk near you happening that day, or on another day. If you have any extra dollars, I humbly ask that you consider donating to the cause; you may do so at Walking for Elizabeth’s page or at my link on that page.

And on a separate but equally important note, may I direct you to another charitable endeavor?

One week after the March for Babies, Revlon will be hosting its annual Run/Walk for Women, whose goal is to find a cure for women’s cancers. My high school friend Candi will be participating in New York City with her sister Dana, for the 14th year in a row.

Unfortunately, women’s cancers are something I have more than a passing knowledge of. Having lost a great aunt to breast cancer, I know firsthand how that particular disease can keep striking at its victim, like a venomous serpent that refuses to leave until the victim succumbs. And because I work in the field of disability claims, I know secondhand that breast cancer in particular (and other female-specific cancers in general) are more serious than most people realize.

These maladies can not only end lives, but tear asunder the lives of the loved ones who remain. If you wish to contribute to the research for a cure, you may do so at Candi and Dana’s link on Revlon’s page, by going here.

Your generosity will be appreciated.


Betsy from Tennessee said...

Great post, John, and two very worthy causes... I lost one of my best childhood friends to Breast Cancer last year... I miss her so much...

Have a great week.

Barb said...

To lose a baby - that must be a searing grief. Two good causes, John. Most of us have experienced personal loses to women's cancers.

Fred Alton said...

John, your post (as usual) was great! I hope you know that I was not being critical of your writing nor of your position on the political piece about Santorum. I am praying for God to have mercy on this our wonderful nation and help us to select God-fearing leaders to D.C.. Perhaps all of these things are designed to make us pray more. If we (as a nation) will do that - the rest will fall into place. I've been "under-the-radar" for a few days so haven't read many blogs and only commented on a very few...but I keep coming back! ☺