CHUGGIN' ALONG WITH SHAWN all started because a little boy who loved trains was diagnosed with cancer...Now it is because other children who love LIFE still have cancer! We climb aboard the humanity train again, and chug along to find a cure at the end of this line!
It's that time again...school, sports schedules, cooler weather, and the PARKWAY RUN AND WALK. It's a time full of energy and excitement. But's its also a time to remember that so many will not be getting ready for school or playing their favorite sports. It is a time to reflect on all of those who are in the battle of their lives trying to beat cancer. It has come to be a time when we can look towards the day when no child has to die from cancer...maybe even a day when we can prevent cancer from ever touching the lives of our friends and family!?!?! But to do that, we need to push forward and WALK towards a cure. This walk requires lots of people with positive attitudes, hopeful spirits, and brillant minds. The journey will require faith, patience, and persistance. In the end of the journey, however, I believe we will find a cure to cancer and help thousands of kids and families along the way.
It's been 5 years since Shawn was diagnosed with leukemia. It's been 1 1/2 years off treatment. It's been a battle, but its been a VICTORY for Shawn! And while we do believe that GOD had a hand in Shawn's cure, we cannot discount the fact that the analysis of Shawn's DNA which matched up to a prescribed treatment plan had a role in his cure too! In other words, SCIENCE and RESEARCH saved Shawn also! The truth is that had Shawn been diagnosed in the 70's early 80's, he would most likely not be with us today. Shawn was fortunate to have had the fate of time on his side, and the advancements of medicine to help arm Shawn in his battle. Those advancements probably only came to be because of the millions of soldiers who have donated their time, money, and energy to bringing awareness to pediatric cancer and supporting cancer research. Perhaps these soldiers had been effected by cancer themselves, perhaps their children were diagnosed with cancer, or maybe it was a family member or a friend that they loved. Regardless of the reason, these soldiers have led the way to battling cancer and because of their efforts have saved thousands of lives-including our son. So where does that bring my family today? I know that Shawn is only here today because of the sacrifices and battles fought by so many children with cancer and their loved ones. There is no way to ever thank those supporters and researchers or to show love to all the children who did not survive their own personal battles. But what we can do is honor those children who fought so bravely by continuing to look for cures for other children who still have a battle to fight. We can honor the children who have lost their lives by contining to battle for them.
So why do we walk? WE WALK BECAUSE WE CAN! Shawn is here! We are here! We have our legs and our health and have come out of his battle stronger than ever! SO WE FIGHT! We fight for children still hoping to be cured! For the kids and families too weak to walk right now...we walk in their place...raising money for their child...finding a way to help them...hoping that this walk will raise enough money that it leads us to a cure! One step at a time, one kid at a time, we walk for others now...WE WALK BECAUSE WE CAN!
And so, our hope is that you will all walk besides us again this year. No doubt, having Shawn walk amongst us, (who am I kidding - he RUNS ahead of most of us), is a true blessing! But to have the army of our friends and family beside us is no less a blessing. We realize it is time. It is money. It is a sacrifice. It is love-and we thank you for it! Please consider joining the battle again this year. Please walk/run/skip/chug with us because WE CAN and WE WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE. CHUGGIN' ALONG WITH SHAWN is the name of our team, it started with a boy - we hope it ends with a CURE! All aboard, as we are CHUGGIN' 2 A CURE!