Our son Julian passed away two years at the age of 20 from osteosarcoma, the most common type of bone cancer. Most people diagnosed with osteosarcoma are under the age of 25. In fact, osteosarcoma is a childhood cancer.
Julian fought bravely for 10 months, but the treatments for this cancer are 30 years old and cannot beat or even slow down this very aggressive form of cancer. We are swimming to fund research for the effective treatment of osteosarcoma and other aggressive forms of cancer.
Childhood cancers receive only 4 cents of every dollar of cancer research funding. Cancer is the number one disease killing children from ages six months to young adulthood. Childhood cancer occurs regularly, randomly and spares no ethnic group, socioeconomic class or geographic region.
Unlike adult cancers, the causes of most childhood cancers are still unknown and are not linked to lifestyle and environmental risk factors. The incidence of childhood cancer is highest in the first five years of life, between ages zero to four years of age.
While 83% of children diagnosed with cancer will survive, survival often comes at a price. Despite advances in research, over 75% of child survivors live with permanent side effects, including deafness, blindness, growth issues, motor impairments, cognitive difficulties, heart, kidney and fertility issues, and psychological, neurological and endocrine disorders.
Osteosarcoma is not the only high-risk childhood cancer. Others include those of the central nervous system, certain leukemias and neuroblastomas. All still have relatively low survival rates, between 7% and 31%.
I joined the SAA community so that, together, we can change that. I am challenging myself by swimming in the Greenwich-Stamford Open Water Swim and raising as much money to fight cancer as I can.
This past year we also lost our dear friend Kaca Enquist, wife of John and mother to Annabel and John, Jr. She lost her battle with metastatic breast cancer at the age of 58. She was courageous and an inspiration to all as she quietly fought this terrible disease.
Please support me by sponsoring my swim and making a gift. The money you give will go towards cancer research, prevention and treatment and will make an impact in the fight to find a cure.
Thank you for your generosity and may it lead to a cancer-free world!
You can make a credit card donation here, or send a check to Swim Across America, c/o Jacque Lang, 14 Little Ridge Road, Ridgefield, CT 06877.
Check should be made out to Swim Across America but please include a note mentioning my name as the swimmer you are supporting!