Cass’ Cancer Recovery Fund

My name is Megh Chakrabarti. And if there’s one thing I know, it’s just how expensive it is to have a life-threatening illness. For those who know me, you’ll know I’ve had a liver transplant. 

But that’s not why I’m writing to you today. Today I want to talk to you about my friend, Cass (Cassie). Cass and I became close the way most of my friend and I have, from being social workers. I’ve always known Cass, in the way you know everyone who has lived or may ever live in Lawrence, KS. A little over a year ago, she messaged me asking what it was like to have such a serious illness and work in healthcare; she was thinking about doing that too. 

For those of you who know Cass, you know she was diagnosed at age 26 with Stage 2b invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast (2012), and we hoped she was in the clear in 2013 after surgery. But if you’ve been following her journey, you know it’s been 5 years since her diagnoses, and she’s relapsed and now has metastatic stage IV cancer in her lungs, liver, and bones.

Ooof. It hurts just to write. I think folks who have chronic illness spend every minute of their lives post diagnosis waiting for the other shoe to drop; when will be the next time some awful piece of news gets dropped in our laps. 

Another thing that Cass and I have in common is to take our complicated lives and experiences and use that knowledge, along with our social work skills, to illicit change in others. Cass does this regularly providing leadership in her Wonder Women support group (for young women with cancer), and also in her job at Bert Nash as a therapist for adults with mental illness. 

So here’s where you come in. Cass is going to need every bit of our support through this journey. Every single person knows that our healthcare system is a for-profit system. And guess what? We all know that social workers aren’t that high up on the pay scale when it comes to income. So, I’m starting this GoFundMe to assist Cass and her husband, Daniel, so we (her community) can help support them financially every step of the way. 

What folks can only imagine is how expensive cancer treatment can be: tests, procedures, travel, second or third opinions, labs, MEDICINES, caregivers, equipment, and that’s just a peek at the medical costs. I want this GoFundMe to provide Cass and Daniel the funding to not have to rush back to work, take the time off they need, and still be able to afford, bills, rent, food, and other every day costs. 

To be honest, $10,000 is just the minimum I’m aiming for. I would love to see the Lawrence and Kansas City communities rise up to support one of our own. To see someone as integral as Cass receive the support to take time with her recovery, heal, and recuperate without having a massive financial burden over her head. Cass gives back to her community in so many ways; let’s work on giving back to her! 

Want to know more about Cass’ journey? Check out her blog here . And if you want to see the amazing work she’s doing with her Wonder Women young survivors of cancer group, check out their Facebook page here. Together we can help Cass get through cancer, one day at a time!!
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Organizer and beneficiary

Megh Chakrabarti 
Lawrence, KS
Cassie Parker 
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