Thursday, March 22, 2007

More About Katie (Lowry) King

Nomination: Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (“LLS”) “Man and Woman of the Year” Competition (It’s a state and national competition.) The winner of the National Competition will be honored with their respective state’s “Boy and Girl of the Year” in USA Today. All chapters are competing during an eight (8) week time spand.

My Goal: To raise $150,000 in two months (this is aggressive, but it would come close to beating the national winner from last year.)

My story: My dad was diagnosed with AML, an agressive Leukemia, which is a blood cancer in March of 2004. He was under the care of MCV's BMT (Bone Marrow Transplant Unit), so we’ve worked closely with Dr. Chung and Dr. McCarty for several years, who a part of Massey Cancer. He had an auto transplant in 2004, just after my husband and I were married here in Richmond . We pushed up our wedding date so my dad could walk me down the aisle and sing at our wedding here in Richmond. My Dad was an artist and painted pictures for my bridesmaids and did “pen and inks” for the groomsmen, while he was in his chemo treatment. Dad relapsed in February 2006, and had a second “allo” transplant in August 2006. He was at MCV for 3 months and suffered and pulled through numberous infections. Dad also experienced kidney failure and was on dialysis. He lost his battle to cancer due to complications with kidney failure and a brain fungus. As you can imagine, this loss is very fresh for our family – just writing about it makes me teary eyed.

My dad was an amazing person - he was my hero, my best friend and my kindred spirit. We had the type of relationship that we knew how deeply we loved each other without saying a word. I tried to anything humanly possible I could to save him, but his life was in God's hands. I know he would want me “go for it” with regard to this campaign, even in light of his recent passing. We both feel like in life you have to look for the good things to come out of a bad situation – even one like losing your parent to cancer.

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