In July 2016, an emergency splenectomy uncovered what would be diagnosed as hemangiosarcoma (one of the most rapidly growing highly invasive variety of cancers). She had a rapid surgical recovery that was then followed by a successful round of chemo and for 10 months we led an almost normal life. This all came to an end on May 20, 2017, the hemangiosarcoma had made it's way to her liver. Reality had finally caught up with us making this the day we never could have imagined, spent entirely on saying our last goodbye's. We are now left with a huge hole in our hearts and a lonely space between our pillows where she slept.
As a way for us to heal from this loss and also give back our goal is to accomplish "Hope's Ride". This is a cross country cycling event , which I will be riding from Amelia Island, FL to Cleveland, OH. It provides a way for us to memorialize Hope’s memory and celebrate her life. At the same time we want to recognize and bring awareness to the wonderful work performed daily by the professionals at SEVO-Med (Southeastern Veterinary Oncology and Internal Medicine Jacksonville FL), and the financial help they provide other pet families though their (Non-profit Hope's Chest foundation). We also want to thank and recognize Embrace Pet Insurance for being a partner with us in this journey throughout Hope's life and allowing us to enjoy Hope's final months without the constant worry of how we would pay for her care.
To make this ride happen we need additional financial help. We are asking for support in funding the cyclist support vehicle and nightly hotel costs of this 15 to 20 day trip as we do our cross country ride. We have invested substantial time in training, cycling equipment and securing time off work to make this happen.
We want to use the magnitude and publicity of this ride to be a platform for awareness of having pet insurance, and the financial relief it can provide in a time when the best care should be the only concern. The importance of lesssning the financial burden can not be overstated. What once seemed like a hopeless sitution for families can now be the reality of getting quality care from specialists such as SEVO- Med, which provides services for Cancer care and other chronic debilitating illnesses. The new Hope it gave us and gives many other pet families everyday is priceless.
A heartfelt thank you to all her doctors, friends and many other acquaintances that made a difference in Hope's life and in turn gave us joy for almost 10 years. We would like to thank those friends and animal lovers in advance for any and all support helping us make "Hope's Ride" a reality.
With sincere thanks,
- Thomas Grabowski
- Steve Gallihugh
- Jessie Frick
- Rose Wade
- Dani Walker
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