In the News
The Lumaghini Fund continues to grow and a new clinical trial will launch soon.
Heidi Fischer was diagnosed with a rare type of pancreatic cancer in 2010 — the same type that claimed the life of Aretha Franklin and Steve Jobs. But the Hannibal native has been in remission thanks to a recently-approved medication, and she formed a local team called Heidi’s Heroes who will travel to Massachusetts in August to pedal toward a cure in the Pan-Mass Challenge (PMC) bike-a-thon. The group of dozens of friends and loved ones are raising funds for Dr. Jen Chan’s Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Cancer Research Lab at Boston’s largest Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, providing research that could lead to the next new treatment for the disease.
Forty years ago, Billy Starr founded the Pan-Mass Challenge, a charity bike ride across Massachusetts that raises money for cancer research. He said that a 400-mile hike on the Appalachian Trail and a 120-mile bike ride a couple of years earlier had helped him to discover what he wanted to do with his life: build a business that “serves a vast public need.” On Friday, Starr urged graduates of the College of Professional Studies at Northeastern to find a way to nurture their own most fervent interests in life.
Dana-Farber pediatric cancer patients enjoyed a special day at Fenway Park sponsored by the Pan-Mass Challenge. Patients like 2-year-old William Holbrook, also known as “Pedal Partners,” got to meet their team of cyclists raising money to defeat cancer at the organization’s annual race. William was diagnosed with a type of liver cancer when he was just 10 months old. His team of cyclists will join thousands more to bike the 192 miles from Sturbridge to Provincetown. “To bike on behalf of a child like this means an awful lot to all of us,” 21- time PMC cyclist John Reilly said.
Don't fight the power — at least not in this context. Become PART of the power Saturday at New London's Octane when over a dozen local hip hop artists will perform for "Hip Hop Gives Back." Fifty percent of the all profits will be donated to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. It's quite a lineup, with artists from as far away as the Bronx and, of course, from across Connecticut: Ricky Bats, Sonny Daytons, Josh Millette, Chach, Gimmick, Tyler Castonguay, Premealom, D. Beau featuring Darren Horton, Tyler Lamarre, Witness, Mako Da General, EricBtheName, Tommy Keech and, the evening's host, Eli Font.
More than 350 young cyclists pedaled their hearts out during the Easton PMC Kids Ride at Parkview Elementary School on Saturday, April 27 with the goal of raising $60,000 to support cancer research and treatment at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.As a spoke in the wheel of the Pan-Mass Challenge 2019 fundraising campaign, the Easton PMC Kids Ride is one of more than 30 PMC Kids Rides happening throughout Massachusetts and New England this year, offering a way for children to become part of the PMC mission and involving young people in volunteerism and fundraising in a safe and athletic way.
Dana-Farber Cancer Oncologist and Artisan Bistro at the Ritz Carlton Boston pastry chef join us to preview the annual Boston Bakes for Breast Cancer fundraiser for breast cancer research—this year focusing on breast cancer in older woman, who are disproportionately undertreated and with less positive outcomes than younger women.
Even a week after finishing the Boston Marathon, Brian Herr felt pain. “My left foot is killing me,” he said with a chuckle Monday afternoon. But having completed the race 30 times, this year wasn’t the worst. He couldn’t walk for four days after his first run in 1988 because he didn’t properly train and in 1992, he ran nine weeks after he broke four ribs and suffered a punctured and collapsed lung after a skiing accident. In 2017, his 27-year streak as an official runner for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute team came to an abrupt end after another ski injury that left him with a fractured tibial plateau and torn ACL and MCL. After this year’s race, he’s run the marathon 28 times to raise money for Dana-Farber and before that twice as an unofficial entrant — or “bandit” — for a total of 30 Bostons.
Business and philanthropic leaders came together to raise more than $2.3 million for cancer research and care. Guests were treated to a musical performance by singer, songwriter and actor Josh Groban.
Those of us with a sweet tooth can feel a little less guilty next month when a local restaurant helps raise money for breast cancer research. From May 6 through Mother's Day, Alma Nove, located at the Hingham Shipyard, is participating in "Boston Bakes for Breast Cancer." Alma Nove, along with several other restaurants and shops throughout Greater Boston, will either donate 100 percent of the sales of one dessert or half of all proceeds from the dessert menu to support breast cancer care and research. Proceeds raised will benefit the nonprofit breast cancer organization Bakes for Breast Cancer, which supports the research of Dr. Rachel Freedman at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.
Monday's Wake Up Call comes from the Dana-Farber Marathon Team.
Six years after losing both of her parents to cancer, Emily Rivinius will lace up her sneakers and run 26.2 miles. “My father never wasted a moment of his day, and I have tried to have that mindset through all of this training and fundraising. I just have to do it,” Rivinius said of the 123rd Boston Marathon. Rivinius, 38, of Bedford is running in memory of her parents, Jay and Michelle Driscoll. Her mother died in 2013 after fighting advanced leiomyosarcoma, and her father died six months later, also in 2013, after a battle with multiple myeloma. “They both had this amazing will to live. They were trying to live for us,” said Rivinius, who has two brothers and three children of her own. “We call them the legacy,” she said of her parents’ nine grandchildren.
On June 27, 2018, I lost one of my closest friends, Katie Winter, who battled breast cancer for four years. She had chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, tests, blood drawings, hospital stays, and more. She refused to let cancer control her life, and she was determined that cancer would never win. And it didn’t. Because although she’s no longer here with us, she was so well loved, admired, and respected by so many people, and taught us all so much, that I am determined to ensure her name and story continue to be shared. Her two young daughters need to see that their mom’s story will be told and that the lessons she taught us all will be passed on. We will do whatever we can to end this horrible disease and together, we are all #TeamKatie.
After an 11-year break, I have rejoined the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team in 2019. My parents were both diagnosed with cancer this year and — thanks to Dana-Farber — have both been given the gift of more time with us. My husband’s parents are also Dana Farber patients living each day filled with hope. I have two little boys, and all four of their grandparents are Dana-Farber patients. As much as I need my parents, my boys have a lot of living left to do, and they need their grandparents here for it!
This is me, crying as I finished my first and only marathon. I ran the Boston Marathon in 2016 for Dana-Farber after they had just gotten us through the worst year of our lives. My husband, Ryan, had hurt himself playing hockey and discovered he had osteosarcoma (bone cancer). It hadn’t spread. It meant a year of brutal chemo but then about an 80% chance he’d survive. He was strong and tough and up for the challenge. Two months prior, we took a picture holding a sign that read "Ryan’s last chemo!"
For Chris and Christie Powers, 26.2 miles is nothing. Both are cancer survivors. Chris battled leukemia when he was 13. Christie battled thyroid cancer. Christie was diagnosed just as their son, Danny, was recovering from a brain tumor and had lost her father to colon cancer a few years earlier. It was during Danny's chemotherapy that Christie decided to run her first Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber. "When you go in and see those kids, those families, what they're going through. It's just, it's extremely motivating," said Christie. This will be her seventh year running for Dana Farber. It's number three for Chris. They're running because they survived cancer. They're running because so many don't.
More children every year are participating in the Suffield Pan Mass Challenge Kids Ride to help benefit the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and The Jimmy Fund. In seven years, the ride has welcomed over 1,100 riders and raised over $251,000. This year's ride is scheduled for May 11.
The Boston Marathon has a rich history that countless people have helped form throughout its 122-year existence. This year, two local runners are set to add their own chapters to the beloved event. Salem residents Jenilee Pudas and Nicholas Mosher will be running in next Monday's Boston Marathon to raise money for cancer research through Dana Farber. The 36-year-olds may be seasoned runners now but they were hardly experts in the beginning of their newfound hobby. Mosher, an engineer, initially began running to get in shape. "I really just did it to get in better shape. I started from walking and getting into other exercises to try and burn calories until I was able to start running harder and longer," he said.
For Red Sox fans, Tuesday’s long-awaited home opener at Fenway Park is worth celebrating. The Sox will honor last year’s World Series championship team while starting a new season of Fenway baseball. For Peabody’s Liam Slattery, Boston’s home opener presents a chance to give back to a worthy cause that saved his life. In 2015, Slattery was diagnosed with hepatosplenic T-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. He was treated at Dana-Farber’s Jimmy Fund Clinic. Now cancer free, Slattery takes pride in paying it forward. “I’m very appreciative of Dana-Farber,” said Slattery, 24. “They saved my life. Whenever they ask me to do anything, I’m willing to do so. Anything they need. I try to stay involved as much as I can to give back a little bit.” Leading up to Tuesday’s home opener, Slattery worked with the Jimmy Fund in spreading the word about “Rally Against Cancer,” and is this year’s “Rally Against Cancer” patient partner.
Kimberly Cramer, of Waltham, joined the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk presented by Hyundai in 2000, making a promise to herself to do what she could to conquer cancer while keeping the memory of her loved ones by her side. Cramer first joined the walk as a team captain for the company she used to work for, Cambridge Technology Partners. “I even asked our CFO to match the employee donations,” Cramer wrote. “Which he did, so that was pretty awesome.” However, that same year, her commitment to the walk took a personal turn. Cramer’s mother was diagnosed later that year with breast cancer. While she started with walking the half marathon route in 2000, Cramer upped her goal to walk the full marathon in 2005, the year her mother died.
I came to running in my mid-20s when some friends suckered me into signing up for a half marathon. After lots of grumbling, I was hooked. Less than two years later, I ran my first full marathon to a respectable 3:59 finish. The Boston Marathon felt like a distant possibility, but I told myself, “Maybe someday.” Meanwhile, my dad, Andy, had been a dedicated marathoner since 2002, qualifying for Boston for the first time in 2004. When he won his age group at the 2016 Detroit Free Press/Chemical Bank Marathon, he qualified for the 2018 Boston Marathon. My dad is a bit of a health nut, so it came as a shock to all of us when he was diagnosed with metastatic oropharyngeal cancer soon after that amazing run in Detroit. The first thing he told his oncologist was, “I’m running the Boston Marathon.”
Westford resident George Popp was honored during the Jimmy Fund Golf Appreciation Night on March 7 at the Yawkey Center for Cancer Care at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Ken Kaiser, of Dracut, was also honored. Popp and Kaiser organized the 10th annual Dawn to Dusk Charity Golf Marathon on June 27, 2018 at the Vesper Country Club in Tyngsboro. The tournament was honored for the Highest Year Over Year Fundraising Jump by Percentage. The event raised $109,300 for breast cancer research at Dana-Farber, 86 percent more than the 2017 event fundraising total.
Aubuchon Hardware, a family-owned hardware store chain in the northeastern United States is proud to announce a fundraising campaign, Hammer Away Cancer, benefiting the Jimmy Fund, which supports the fight against cancer at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Through April 14, Aubuchon Hardware customers can raise funds for patient care and research at Dana-Farber by donating any amount at the register. When customers donate $5 or more, they will receive an Aubuchon Reward good for $5 off their next purchase. The campaign's goal is to raise more than $50,000 for Dana-Farber. This year's patient partner is M. Marcus Moran Jr., former CEO/treasurer of Aubuchon Hardware. He has been a longtime supporter of Dana-Farber, where he was treated for colon cancer more than 20 years ago. As a patient partner, Moran will encourage employees and customers to participate in Hammer Away Cancer.
T-Mobile CEO John Legere visited the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute on Wednesday to present a $4.5 million check to the center’s initiative that aims to treat cancer. Legere’s multimillion-dollar gift to the cancer research center comes after the tech executive called on his social media followers in December to help raise $2 million. The money will go toward Dana-Farber’s “Profile” project, which gives patients seeking cancer treatment at its facilities the opportunity to have their tumors tested for nearly 450 genomic abnormalities.
Franklin resident Nicole Rakitin is familiar with the pain that cancer can cause. Rakitin joined the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk after she lost her husband Jason to cancer in 2017. “There was noting I could do to save him,” Rakitin stated. “I just hope that by helping raise money for research and patient care, that I can help save the life of someone else. I walk to keep Jay’s memory alive.” Rakitin was treated at Dana-Farber until he passed away on Sept. 26, 2017. “He was the best husband to me, father to our girls, and friend to so many,” Rakitin stated. This year Rakitin and her team, The Rak Pack, will be walking their second Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk.
Thursday's Wake Up Call comes from the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk.
Nearly one year ago, Mary Shertenlieb made national headlines for her emotional Boston Marathon run. On Tuesday, Shertenlieb was celebrated at TD Garden, recognized by the Celtics as the “Hero Among Us” during the game.
Dining Playbook’s Producer (known as Megs by Billy & Jenny) is running her very first marathon this April, and she’s running with the Dana Farber Marathon Challenge team. Here’s an inside look at the team, where their fundraising dollars go, and marathon training in Boston winters!
When you get cancer at 14 and lose half of your left leg a few months later, that kind of encouragement isn’t just lip service. Camden said it’s kept him going, so much so that, on Friday night, he was able to leave it all behind. This weekend, Camden will be in Fort Myers for a 48-hour trip with the Jimmy Fund Clinic to Red Sox spring training. There will be sunshine, and a swimming pool, and — Camden’s hoping — just a few minutes to really talk to Mookie Betts.
Michelle Imonti and her sister, Brenda Sparrow, are headed to the Red Sox home opener after Larry Lucchino surprised them Friday morning with free tickets. Imonti and Sparrow have participated in the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk to benefit the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute for the past ten years. Imonti was the first team leader to register a team for this year's event, scheduled for Sunday, September 22.
Vesper CC members George Popp and Ken Kaiser were recognized on Jimmy Fund Golf Appreciation Night on Thursday for holding one of the top Jimmy Fund golf fundraisers for the year. Popp and Kaiser annually hold a golf marathon session at Vesper from sun-up to sun-down, playing as many holes as possible in the time allotted while carrying their own bags and refreshments and keeping score. The event was held at the Yawkey Center for Cancer Care in Boston and featured a reception, dinner, speakers and award presentations.
Students at Hopkinton High School on Friday participated in “Putting for Patients,” a mini-golf event designed to raise funds for lifesaving research and care at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. Over the past few years, several local high schools have organized these events, which bring an 18-hole mini golf course to the school gymnasium for a day of fun that supports the latest advancements at Dana-Farber. In addition to mini-golf, the event often includes a long putt contest, prizes, food, face painting and a caricaturist. Students at Hopkinton High raised $2,200 last year.
Rally Against Cancer, presented by Chowdaheadz, celebrates the decades-long partnership of the Jimmy Fund and Boston Red Sox by inspiring Red Sox fans to start a Rally Against Cancer fundraising team to benefit the Jimmy Fund and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s lifesaving mission. Fans partner with their workplaces and schools to encourage co-workers, classmates, and friends to contribute $10 or more to the Jimmy Fund. In exchange, participants may wear Red Sox gear to work or school on Fenway Park Opening Day, April 9, when the Red Sox play the Toronto Blue Jays.
Since 1953, the Red Sox relationship with the Jimmy Fund at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute has been the model for sports teams. The Red Sox Foundation supports the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, for providing lifesaving research and adult and pediatric patient care. Through a longstanding and unique partnership that dates back to 1947, the Red Sox have helped the Jimmy Fund raise more than $146 million for cancer treatment and research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Jackson resident Michael Glover is running to conquer cancer as a member of the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team in the 123rd Boston Marathon this April 15. Along with more than 500 Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge teammates from across the United States and around the world, Glover will run Massachusetts’ historic marathon route from Hopkinton to Boston to raise $6 million for cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
There are numerous reasons someone may choose to run a marathon. For some it’s a physical challenge to accomplish, for others it’s an outlet for emotion. For three Nashua residents, it’s an opportunity to be part of something bigger than themselves. On April 15, more than 30 Nashuans will hit the ground running, quite literally, for the 123rd Boston Marathon. Residents Marie Broadway, Cherie Hendrickson and Marjorie Morse are all a part of the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team. The team’s 500-plus members from around the world work throughout the year to raise $6 million for cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
How good was superstar Josh Groban’s performance at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s gala? In a room of more than 500 Bostonians, he got a bit more applause than New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft. No surprise to us, really. We’ve heard both of them sing and in that department, Groban definitely has the edge. The 28th annual Discovery Celebration took place Feb. 9 at The Breakers.
Hundreds of guests gathered at The Breakers hotel in Florida, where they took part in Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and The Jimmy Fund’s 28th annual Discovery Celebration. The attendees at this year’s charity event, which managed to raise more than $2.3 million for cancer research and care at the Longwood hospital, was a veritable who’s who. The programming featured a special appearance from TV personality Katie Couric, inspirational remarks from Robert Kraft, Institute trustee and owner of our Super Bowl-winning Patriots, and a performance from Grammy-nominated singer, songwriter and actor Josh Groban that included his hit, “You Lift Me Up,” and a rendition of “Bridge Over Troubled Water” with his 18-piece orchestra and a gospel choir.
On January 24, Boston Bakes for Breast Cancer celebrated 20 years of raising funds for breast cancer research. The annual event is held during the week leading up to Mother’s Day, when more than 250 establishments throughout greater Boston donates the sales from one dessert to Bakes for Breast Cancer, Inc. Proceeds raised from this fundraiser fund a researcher physician at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute to support breast cancer research. To kick-off the 20th Anniversary, seven pastry chefs & chefs, who participate in Boston Bakes each year, showcased their wonderful culinary talents and specialty desserts, including Pastry Supervisor Kerry Levesque of The Ritz-Carlton, Boston, which hosted this event.
The 33rd annual Berkshire County Jimmy Fund ice fishing derby will take place from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, at the Onota Lake Pavilion. Trophies and prizes will be awarded. Admission is $15 for adults and $5 for children. The fee includes roast beef, hamburgers, hot dogs, clam chowder, soda, coffee, and hot chocolate.
Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Bruins Alumni teamed up for the annual charity game on Saturday, which raises money for cancer care and research. More than a dozen hospital staff members and former Bruins players laced up for the cause at the Warriors Ice Arena. Over the last five years, the even thas raised roughly $180,000, which goes directly to the Jimmy Fund. Even though the game is for charity, the competition is fierce. “You can see that the game picked up when they thought they were gonna to lose to us,” Robin McGraw, Dana-Farber Rink Rats coach, said.
Hundreds of dance enthusiasts from across the Cape are expected to turn out at Mashpee High School on Saturday for an annual 5K Dance Marathon that raises funds for vital breast and ovarian cancer research. The ninth installment of Dancing for a Cure Cape Cod invites dance enthusiasts of all ages to dance or cheer for four hours to raise money for the Dana Farber Cancer Institute’s research. “This year’s event will be similar in some ways and different in other ways, we always try to make it a little better each year,” said Dancing for a Cure founder Susan Mendoza Friedman.
The Bruins Alumni team is known for raising a lot of money for great causes, but this one is a little different: the Alumni B’s are going to face...doctors? That’s right: the Bruins Alumni team is playing a charity game against the Dana-Farber Rink Rats, a team made up of doctors, nurses and staff from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. If you’re from anywhere near Boston, you know about the great work done by Dana-Farber, but this is taking things to a new level: members of the Dana-Farber team had to raise at least $1,200 to play in the game.
The 24th annual Jimmy Fund Snow Challenge fundraiser will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 9 at the Nashoba Valley Ski Area, 79 Powers Road, Westford. The fundraiser benefits cancer research and patient care at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The entry fee is $240 for a four-person race team and $60 for individual racers. All racers receive a lift ticket for the day and a barbecue lunch.
The Wellesley High School basketball teams don’t typically need another reason to beat Natick, but the stakes were a little higher on Friday night: The teams were playing for a cure. The girls and boys varsity teams played in a double header, hosting Natick on the Wellesley court and fundraising for cancer research. All money collected at the game was donated to support research in craniopharyngioma and metastatic breast cancer, in honor of Wellesley’s Harry Clark and Carol Chaoui.
Joe C. Stevens, owner of 1105 Main in West Springfield, will be serving mac and cheese topped with smoked BBQ brisket for Chefs for Jimmy 2019. "This is a great event serving people from all walks of life," he said. Serving people at the event, yes, and serving --helping -- people who suffer from cancer. Chefs for Jimmy offers participants a memorable evening with delicious local dishes, raising money for cancer research and patient care at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.
Hundreds of dance enthusiasts of all ages from on and off the Cape, will dance OR cheer for 4 hours in Mashpee to raise funds for vital research of breast and ovarian cancer at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Music of the decades provided by #1 DJ Cape Tunes. Guest appearances by Miss Massachusetts 2018, Gabrielle Taveras, The NE Patriots Cheerleaders, JT the ‘Mayor of Cape Cod’, and Celebrity emcee,The Fat Ass Cancer Bit#!, Christine Ernst.
Chez Josef in Agawam is gearing up for the 29th annual Chefs for Jimmy fundraiser, an event designed to aid in the fight against cancer. Around 30 area restaurants will participate in the fundraiser – presented by Winer Levsky Group of UBS Financial Services Inc. and hosted by the Jimmy Fund Council of Western Massachusetts – at the banquet venue located at 176 Shoemaker Lane.
Southborough police raised $3,861 for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. “The money was raised through the sales of our Pink Patch, which took place during the month of October,” the department wrote on Facebook. “A big shout out goes to Officer John Officer for spearheading the Pink Patch Project this year, and for all of the supporters that purchased a Pink Patch from us.” During October, officers replaced their normal patches with a pink version and sold the patches for $10 each.
Before the Bishop Fenwick football cheerleaders begin performing their routines at the Crusaders' games next September, they will be on the big stage at Gillette Stadium showcasing a cheer before one of the New England Patriots preseason home games in August. It will mark the second time the Fenwick cheerleaders have had the privilege of doing a routine at a Pats game. The girls raised money as part of the annual Cheer For Dana-Farber fundraising program. The money raised goes to patient care and research at Dana-Farber in Boston which is one of the leading cancer centers in the world and ranked in the top four by US News and World Report for best hospitals for both pediatric and adult care for people suffering from cancer.