On 10.21.2014, everything changed. Actually, it changed the day Maureen was diagnosed with breast cancer while pregnant with our youngest, Katelyn, who was born on April 7, 2004. It was an inflection point. In the process of “treating” the cancer, we were changed as a family. We had to choose what was important. For 11 years, what was important was our time together. Yes, there were events, moments, but most importantly, there was time. Together.
10.21.2014 made us understand time in a whole new way. The gift it is. And, how we wanted to use our ours. Our “new sidewalks”, as Kyla reflected on Shel Silverstein’s poem in her homily at St. Andrew’s on 10.21.2019, the 5 year anniversary of her mom’s passing. One of Taylor’s “sidewalk” is Habitat for Humanity, and Kyla’s “sidewalk” includes #pinkkids . Katelyn is exploring her sidewalk, having partnered with Kyla on this year’s 4th #DigPink fundraiser, breaking a record and raising over $14K.
My sidewalk includes philanthropic efforts with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, that has spanned 7 century Team in Training rides in honor and memory of Kethan, and thePresident’s Award in 2017 for my 2 years dedicated to the original partnership with Walgreens. And, it includes tapping my years in information technology, starting at Apple in 1987, where I met Maureen back in Chicago, to #changethefight with cancer by changing how we use and share data on the Internet.
CLOUD - Consortium for Local Ownership and Use of Data - is an open source software effort to rethink our broken information system, broken far beyond healthcare. To find new answers not in the complexity of current approaches but the simplicity of a new vision, a new path forward.
Our work was born of my wife, Maureen's, 11 year on-and-off affliction with breast cancer. She passed on 10.21.2014. This work to #changethefight with cancer is born of my love for her and a desire to change the information paradigm, so as to advance new cures more quickly and to ensure current cures reach every patient that needs them. This is for the 42,000 women (and men) who die from metastatic breast cancer each year, and then for all who face any kind of cancer, and beyond.
With the incredible support already, we've updated the #ChangeTheFight campaign goal to $100K, to lay the foundation for all of our family’s sidewalks.
Some Quotes From Those Who Have Supported the Campaign So Far....
CLOUD is changing cancer patient care in honor of Tom Wilkinson and all other heros who fought and continue to fight. - Meribeth and Rick Wilkinson ($250)
This is such an amazing testimony to Maureen. - Meredith and Duane Cooper ($100)
For you and all your hard work on behalf of your family and in memory of Maureen. - The Kelliehor Family ($2500)
The Tobias Family wishes you the very best. - Michelle and Paul Tobias ($500)
Gary, I consider it an honor to help you in your efforts to Change The Fight With Cancer! Keep up the great work! - Tim Hamburger ($200)
Gary Thompson at MD Anderson Cancer Center on 9.11.2019 addressing Tumor Registry team. His talk on Maureen, Love, Cancer, and #pinksocks available here: https://vimeo.com/360047634