Registration: 8:30am | Shotgun Start: 10:00am | Lunch: 2:30pm | Awards: 3pm
Hosted at Montgomery Country Club | 20908 Golf View Dr, Laytonsville, MD 20882
This Year’s Beneficiary
Just like any other year, I was getting ready for the holidays and stressing like every other parent. I had no idea what kind of stress was ahead of me. A few months prior, I noticed an abnormality as I was getting dressed. I felt ok, so I ignored it for a while as I usually do. After some time passed and it was still there, something didn’t sit right, so I went to the dr. I was thinking it may be a cyst or something, but she seemed a bit worried and said that it needed to be checked out further. A couple of weeks before Christmas, I went in for a mammogram, biopsies and a sonogram. Two days before Christmas of 2022, I got the official word. It was in fact what I was most afraid of; I had stage 2 breast cancer.
Everything turned upside down. I went through so many emotions and scared was definitely the first one. I started chemo in February of this year and after 16 rounds, with a couple of setbacks along the way, I just finished in July. Chemo was by far the hardest thing I have ever had to do. It took a huge toll physically and mentally. I am very fortunate to have a great support system and great doctors. After a few weeks post treatment, I am finally starting to get some energy back and feel a bit more “human” again.
Although, I am not completely done with this process yet. In a week, I have to go in for surgery. I will be getting a double mastectomy and reconstruction. It will be a fairly long surgery and I am pretty nervous, but it has to be done to ensure that the cancer hopefully does not come back. The recovery process will be long and tough, but once it is all over, hopefully I can put this awful thing behind me. This is not at all how I thought that my year would be so far, but I am lucky that it is only a year. It has been a speed bump and I will be able to move past it. Fortunately, next year I will be able to look back and say that it was just a part of my journey
LAST Year’s Beneficiary
Thank you for taking the time to read and share why we are fundraising for our brother Kevin – who continues to stay positive, still jokes around and teases us, and takes in the fresh air when he can (on MSK’s roof deck) “even if it is city air.”
Where it all started
It’s easy isn’t it? Breathing in, breathing out…we do it hundreds of times each day. We do it without thinking. But what happens when we have difficulty breathing? For Jason, breathing wasn’t so easy.
When his trouble began in 2009, he was constantly short of breath and had difficulties catching his breath. After a several doctors visits, some procedures and a lot of testing, we were informed that Jason had an Idiopathic Interstitial Lung Disease, Pulmonary Fibrosis. This disease caused scar tissue to grow inside his lungs which slowed the oxygen flow from his lungs to his blood. With reduced oxygen flow to his blood, his body did not work as it should. Low oxygen levels and the scarring made it hard to breathe. There was no cure and the cause was unknown. The only option for survival was a lung transplant. After weeks of intense testing, Jason was placed on a lung transplant list.
Jason received a new lung on September 1, 2009 and after several weeks of ups and downs in the hospital, most of that time spent in ICU; Jason was finally able to go home. Although he was never 100% healthy after his transplant, he lived life to the fullest, the best he could given his restrictions.
Jason and his long-time girlfriend Nikki were married in May 2010 and their first and only child, Colin was born in May 2012. Jason was a wonderful father and adored Colin. Luckily, Jason was able to spend a lot of time with Colin for the first six months of his life and was able to celebrate Colin’s first Christmas with him.
The day after Christmas 2012, Jason wasn’t feeling well and was having complications with his breathing. He was admitted to the hospital, where he spent the last few weeks of his life. After a rapid decline in health, Jason’s one good lung was no longer working the way it should and his body began to shut down. After time on life support, it was determined that he would never recover from the damage that had already been caused. Jason succumbed to pneumonia on January 17, 2013.
It was Jason’s chosen time and his journey was long and hard and he fought up until the end. He will be in our hearts forever.
Our job now is to ensure that his son Colin knows who his dad was and how vibrant and full of life he was and how much he loved him.
Colin has now started pre-school and is a very affectionate, energetic, inquisitive, and sweet four year old little boy. He loves Batman, Paw Patrol, and Cars. He enjoys spending time outside playing with friends, riding bikes, swimming, puzzles, coloring and painting.
All proceeds from any events will go directly to Colin for his education.
Gina was diagnosed with maxillary sinus cancer (nasopharyngeal carcinoma) on April 20, 2017 at just 39 years old. Gina was having what she thought was excruciating tooth pain and her dentist was adamant about her going to the ER. The physician assistant on staff insisted she have a CT scan of her sinuses in addition to an MRI.
Shortly after, Gina was told that she had a soft tissue mass that started in her sinus cavity and had spread under her eye, down the left side of her face to her mouth and teeth. Gina fought for the next 7 months, enduring several surgeries, chemo, radiation and immunotherapy. Gina passed on November 21, 2017 just before Thanksgiving.
Gina always said that she never wanted anyone to go through the pain she endured, and it was her mission to raise awareness to everyone including medical professionals. It is a rare cancer that is becoming more common.
Gina’s power of positivity shined through in everything she did. Her generosity was known by many through her volunteer work with cancer organizations and her endless giving to others. Her smile and laughter were contagious.
Gina’s Dance For The Cure is a IRS registered 501c3 nonprofit doing business as Gina’s Cancer Fighting Warriors. Our mission is to raise awareness and detection through early prevention, and provide research funding and patient support to those battling oral, head and neck cancers. Breathing, speaking, hearing and sight are functions we rely upon daily. Let’s work together to bring an end to cancer!