As Family of Catherine and Kevin and Michael Manning, we are writing this in the hope of supporting them through the terrible thief that is cancer.
Some of you already know that Kevin was diagnosed with Stage IV Medullary Thyroid Cancer back in the Fall. At that time, Cathy & Kevin did what they always do..they put others first. They made a plan of action that would have the least amount of burden on those around them. They consulted specialists & surgeons and plotted a course that would maintain a sense of normalcy while attacking the problem aggressively without worrying their friends and family.
All of us who know them, are aware of what a kind and thoughtful man Kevin is. Family is all inclusive in his world and his actions. Cathy is always willing to help on anyone’s project and add to the laughter and fun. Their son Michael a perfect blend of the both of them, adding to the mix. Kevin’s ability to make an adventure for his son and all the cousins is an art to itself. Get stuck in traffic in NYC? Perfect time to make a stop at Patsy's Pizza. Kids stuck in the house on a rainy summer day? Crabbing or fishing off the bay is the call of action. In Ireland at the Meeting of the Waters in County Wicklow, rather than just take a picture, Kevin decides it's the perfect time to teach Michael & Brianna & Andrew to skip stones while the rest of us explore. At a sporting event he won't tell you how much better his team is than yours, but he will quietly give you stats on
how well your team did against his in the past, to make you feel better. Running your first Triathlon? He’ll help you with the ocean swimming and be sure to be along
the sidelines to cheer you on, or even jump in the water with you, for support.
The time has come where we, as their loved ones, need to let them focus on themselves and not worry about us. They also shouldn’t have to worry about the all
consuming cost that a cancer diagnoses brings as well as the cost of everyday life.
The endless calls to the insurance, to Drs., to pharmacies, all while trying to battle
the thief that is cancer.
It steals their security, not only in Kevin, for his body’s abilities, but in Cathy’s security in her ability to fix it. It takes the taste and enjoyment out of food, it shrinks
the boundaries of Kevin’s world down to the size of a bed. It robs him of the belief of
who he was before the pain and devastation. Makes him feel less, as if this is somehow his fault that cancer landed in him. It makes Cathy feel that if she could
just add one more chore to her list to make everyone feel better that it will sort the whole thing out. Cancer makes us; the family and friends, feel at a loss for words or
actions. Do they need us now? No words can express the feelings & love we feel for them.
Many have already done so much, Catherine & Kevin are so thankful for the love and support given to them.
We can do something more, we can give Cathy and Kevin and Michael the means and the memories to not worry about the minor indignities, if one can afford to give, no amount is too small. If one has a funny story to share or positive affirmation; it all
Above all we can make sure that Kevin does not see himself as LESS. We will not let Cancer steal Kevin of his belief in himself. We can show him that we still see the man
who always does the right thing, supports his family, far & wide.
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