Dear Friends and Family,
I am a Multiple Myeloma Patient. I will be trekking to Everest Base Camp & Kalapathhar with other MM Patients and Caregivers to raise Multiple Myeloma awareness and fundraise for cancer research and a cure. During the trek, we will show all Multiple Myeloma Patients that you can do and achieve whatever is desired.
In April 2015, I was diagnosed with MM at MD Anderson Cancer Center. On August 4, 2015, I received an autologous stem cell transplant. Very emotional. My new birthday.
My long term goals are to: (1) spread MM awareness, (2) help patients in any way, shape, or form, (3) fundraise for cancer research, (4) provide motivational speaking, (5) show patients that they can and will live their “New Normal Life”, and (6) beat Multiple Myeloma into submission.
My two main points:
- NEVER QUIT. NEVER STOP. NOT TODAY. NOT EVER (sm). My motto started on a cycling metric ride honoring fallen emergency services personnel in Gaston, SC. Within 10 miles of the finish, I encountered the dreaded “elephant hills.” Over and over I said the words, “NEVER QUIT. NEVER STOP. NOT TODAY. NOT EVER.” My motto stuck and became the foundation for everything I do.
- HELPING PATIENTS IN ANY WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM. I’ve met with newly diagnosed patients and reassured each patient that a positive outcome is within reach. You are not defined by cancer. You are defined by what you do, how you hold yourself, and how you react to stressful situations. In simplistic terms, helping others “changes the world with one random act of kindness at a time”.
I have participated in 3 clinical trials. My current clinical trial compares Empliciti (Elotuzamab) with Revlimid/Dex in the maintenance therapy phase vs. Revlimid/Dex alone. Empliciti is a monoclonal antibody and works by finding undetectable myeloma cells. Empliciti surrounds and highlights the myeloma cells allowing the Natural Killer component of the White Blood cells to attack and destroy the myeloma cells.
Multiple myeloma is the second most common form of blood cancer and, sadly, has one of the lowest five-year relative survival rates of all cancers. While there is no cure, great progress is being made. Thanks to the great work of the MMRF, the world's leading private funder of myeloma research, the FDA has approved TEN new treatments, including FOUR in just the past 18 months – a track record that's unparalleled in the world of oncology. These drugs have tripled the lifespan of myeloma patients after diagnosis. The MMRF is now funding over 20 additional treatments in various stages of development, giving hope to tens of thousands of patients and families.
The MMRF is one of the most highly regarded cancer foundations in the world. An outstanding 90% of the total MMRF budget goes directly towards research and related programming. The MMRF is in the top 1% of all charities, having earned Charity Navigator’s 4-star rating for the past eleven years in a row.
Please consider supporting me on my Everest Base Camp/Kalapathhar Trek as I climb 18,192 feet above sea level to the 'front door' of the tallest mountain in the world and raise $10000 for the MMRF. You will make a difference!
Make it a great day! L. Gary and Robin
**Want to double your impact - inquire if your company matches your charitable donations and submit your donation information through your company's portal or HR to receive a match! Forward me your confirmation email and I can get your match added to my fundraising total!