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March 7th, 2008

In Lieu of Flowers…

On March 6, 2008 at approximately 8:45am MST, Gaylene lost her courageous battle against Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma; a rare form of thyroid cancer that spread, unchecked, into her liver.

Surrounded by her loved ones, Gaylene was aware of what was happening to her and before she slipped into a hepatic encephalopathy coma, she was able to tell them all that she loved them.

This feisty, vibrant, and strong woman will be laid to rest on Saturday, March 8th. In lieu of flowers, her family asks that donations be made, in her name, to either The American Cancer Society or The Lance Armstrong Foundation.

I, too, ask that you contribute - even if it is just a couple of dollars - to one or the other. In the past year, I have seen three people now lose their lives to cancer. First, Jenny - entirely too young to see her life ended. Then, a co-worker that we all called "Robi"; a brilliant and charming man the world is much the less for losing. Now, my dear friend's mother - life snipped short in her prime, golden years.

I once vehemently decried to a close friend of mine, "I hate cancer!" He, an active member of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation ever since his wife had become a breast cancer survivor, said something that has stuck with me through the years. "Yes,", he answered, "but what are you doing about it?"

We can despise and rally against the awful disease the claims so many lives - young and old - or we can do something about it. A few dollars spared to the on-going research for a cure is the very least we can do in this battle that every one of us has a stake in. Cancer is something that affects everyone's life - whether you have had it, know someone who has, or watched a loved one suffer through it - all of us have come into contact with his deadly and terrible disease in one form or another.

Cancer is something we all fear and despise, yet shall we stand idly by while it claims the lives of children and adults at alarming rates? Or shall we do something - no matter how small - to take a stand against this deadly killer? Please, make a donation - do it for Jenny. Do it for Robi. Do it for Gaylene. Do it for all of the millions of lives lost, young and old, and the millions more whose lives were shattered by this disease. Just, please, do it.

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