Following in My Mother's Footsteps

Northwestern Medicine
Cancer Care/Oncology May 11, 2012

As a young girl, I remember watching my mother and her friends sitting around our dining room table discussing how they could do something to help their friend Lynn who had recently passed away after her battle with breast cancer.  They were not doctors or researchers, just 18 friends determined to make a difference. 

What started as a small group of women trying to save their friend, has since transformed into a movement.   While Lynn lost her battle with cancer in 1984, her memory is honored every day and her friends continue to fight with the perseverance Lynn showed during the six years following her diagnosis.   The group formally launched the Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation, which has raised more than $25 million for breast cancer research since its inception. 

My mother’s tenacity and commitment taught me that no mountain is too high and that if you put your mind to something, you can make a difference.  I grew up with my mother and her friends as role models and I am proud to now be serving their mission as chair of the board of directors of the Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation.  We work every day to stand at the forefront of the breast cancer battle with the life and memory of Lynn as a powerful guide. 

Breast cancer affects mothers, daughters, sisters and friends. If you look around the room at our group, that is who you will see.  There are eight mother-daughter pairs on our board of directors, most of whom, like me, were connected to this cause from the beginning.  The majority of the women on our board have either had breast cancer themselves or have had a first degree relative with breast cancer.  We are personally tied to this cause and we are fighting to make a difference. 

The Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation partners with Northwestern Memorial Hospital and the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University to support innovative contributions to the understanding, research and treatment of breast cancer.  The money we raise is used for grants that provide seed funding for breast cancer researchers to test theories with the ultimate goal of finding a cure for breast cancer and improving care.  We also support fellowships designed to develop leaders in the field of clinical and basic breast cancer research.

What started as a small group of friends trying to make an impact has grown into something big…something meaningful…and something that has touched the lives of many women.  We do this for Lynn…for one another…and for all of the mothers and daughters in the world. 

Learn more information about the Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation or to join us as we work to advance research and fight breast cancer.

To read more of the story, click here.

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