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               Building a Bridge to Hope

  August 2010 Newsletter

Current Stories
Disneyland Half Marathon, Philadelphia & San Jose Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathons & Other 2010 Events - Hold the Dates!
Meet VIP Denise Mirafuentes
Pam and Rob Shaw Mix Sports and Support for Lazarex!
A Patient's Family Thanks Lazarex - Shay and Danny Thompson
Check Out Team for Life Success
Calling for Hope - Liam Miller and friends Turn Fun Into Funds
MLBPAA and Lazarex Golf Fundraiser a Homerun!

Dear Friend,  

These are exciting times at Lazarex. This month we are receiving national television exposure on the program Insights hosted by Hugh Downs, a television personality so pervasive he is listed on Wikipedia as the person who has been on TV more hours than anyone else in the history of the medium.

The Lazarex segment will receive nation-wide exposure on CNBC, Fox News, TLC, the Discovery Channel and various Public Broadcasting outlets. Voice of America will distribute our segment internationally.

We also will be profiled in the Contra Costa Times. If you don't get the Times or miss Insights we will post links on our website as soon as they are available.

Of course, our focus remains on serving our patients. We now have more than 40 patients around the world participating in clinical trials and receiving support from Lazarex. In the past year our number of patients has doubled, which means an even greater need for support. Please review our many fundraising opportunities to see what appeals to you. As always, you have our gratitude and the gratitude of patients like this month's VIP, Denise Mirafuentes of Hawaii.

Please help us spread hope for patients like Denise by sending this email to friends who you think would be interested in Lazarex Cancer Foundation.

If you're interested in supporting Lazarex with a financial donation or if you have a fundraising idea beyond those featured on this newsletter or on our website, send Susan an email. 

Won't you join us in building a bridge to hope? 

Dana's sig

Dana Dornsife
President, Lazarex Cancer Foundation
Lazarex Events - Join us, Donate, Have Fun!

Team for Life Disneyland Marathon                          disneyland

Where: Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, CA

When: September 5, 2010

What: This is the fundraising event of the year for our California supporters. Sold Out!  Please visit TFL Disneyland Half Marathon for more information. To make a donation for this event visit TFL Disneyland Donations.


Philadelphia Rock 'n' Roll Marathon 

Where: Philadelphia, PAPH RnR

When: September 19, 2010

What: Join or support Lazarex's Team for Life and help us build a Bridge to Hope for cancer patients as summer winds down in the cradle of democracy. This is our key event for 2010 in the Eastern Time Zone. To sign up, donate or for more information please visit TFL Philadelphia Half Marathon.

San Jose Rock 'n' Roll Marathon         WDW logo

Where: San Jose, CA

When: October 3, 2010

What: The Lazarex staff and Team for Life are rallying for our second annual San Jose Rock 'n' Roll half marathon! We will be on the course, walking or running, to raise funds for our patients. Join the team, cheer us on, donate or volunteer. Your support is most welcome.

To sign up, donate or for more information please visit TFL San Jose Half Marathon.

Mark Your Calendar for Other 2010 Fund raising Events
Oct. 16 "Hope in Motion" Motorcycle & Hot Rod Rally Concord, CA - See our ad in the September issue of Alive Magazine. The Devil Dolls Motorcycle Club is hosting a BBQ, live musical entertainment plus a car and motorcycle show from noon to 7 p.m., all for a $25 admission. The proceeds benefit Lazarex. Sponsors include Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer,
Connie Lekas-Lecatsas and Green Wheelin' Scooters. Tickets are available through EasyTix On Line (, search word "Hope in Motion") or EasyTix by phone at 480-840-0457; through the Devil Dolls Motorcycle Club, or at the door the day of the event. Our entire staff will be there and we hope to see you.                         
Stay tuned...more to come!

Meet Very Important Patient (VIP) Denise Mirafuentes

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Denise has been a Lazarex patient since May 2009. She was diagnosed with soft tissue sarcoma in April of 2008 and was treated with chemotherapy, surgery and more chemotherapy through the remainder of that year. She suffered through feeling poorly, hair loss and her disease did not respond well to the treatment. In January 2009 she began a clinical trial in Santa Monica, CA (near Los Angeles), 3,000 miles from her home in Hawaii that required her to return to the mainland every 3-4 weeks.


"Without assistance from Lazarex Cancer Foundation I would not be able to continue with this clinical trial. Living 3,000 miles away across the Pacific Ocean it would have been near impossible for me to afford this life saving trek for medical care and would have put a lot of financial pressure on my family. You would think being diagnosed with a serious, often terminal disease, might be the end of the world. Instead, I feel I have been blessed as I am receiving all the love from everyone in the now and not in the later. I am living a full, content and blissful life. Lazarex has given me the opportunity to continue living it and I am eternally grateful for the help they have given to me and my family."


Denise is now a grandmother of two beautiful twin boys who turned one year old in February. They are her "breath of life". Her last scan results were so positive that she is now on a bimonthly schedule in the clinical trial. She recently celebrated her 53rd birthday, is feeling much better and has her hair back! Congratulations, Denise!

Read about some of our other VIPs
Sports + Ability + Time = Shaw's Support for Lazarex

ShawsPam and Rob Shaw had the good fortune to retire young from their careers with the medical division of Varian in Palo Alto which builds linear accelerators, the radiation treatment machines with which many cancer patients are treated. Their children are nearly grown and independently pursue their own activities. Pam and Rob are athletic and active, and were looking for a way to combine their interests in sports, philanthropy and cancer treatment. We are thrilled they found Lazarex.


"I enjoyed working in the cancer treatment field. I thought it was a very interesting, rewarding and ever-changing field. I'm at a point in my life where I feel that it's time to give back. About six months ago I'd been looking for a local organization I could help when I learned about Lazarex Cancer Foundation" Pam said. "Since discovering Lazarex, both Rob and I are excited to help raise funds and to give other support the foundation may need. I am currently registered for the San Jose Rock and Roll half marathon and will raise funds for Team for Life. My goal is to raise as much money as I can for the foundation. This last spring I approached Diablo Country Club's Tennis Facility to see if they could support Lazarex with their Annual Women's Tennis Invitational. Diablo Tennis has chosen Lazarex as their nonprofit organization to support this year. I look forward to helping raise funds with my tennis buddies for Lazarex in September.

Check out Pam's fundraising web page:

I'm doing the San Jose Half Marathon in October to help raise funds for Lazarex Cancer Foundation. If you can help, that would be great!"

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The Thompson Family Thanks Lazarex with Their Support
Shay & Danny Thompson of Denver, NC first came in contact with Lazarex when Shay's mom, Ruth, was diagnosed a second time with pancreatic cancer. In October 2009 Ruth was declared to be in clinical remission. Read Ruth's story. 


Shay tells us, "Fortunately my Mom was able to receive funding through Lazarex to pay for travel and housing while she was in California for a clinical trial treatment for a year and a half. Without this funding the treatment would have been impossible due to the cost to reside in California. Lazarex Cancer Foundation proved to us that there really is hope in this world. We are deeply grateful for the loving and caring people at Lazarex. They gave us hope for the future. Our lives have been truly blessed by the friendship and love they have given our family."


Shay and Danny attended the March 2009 Lazarex Lunch and Learn in Rose Hill, NC where they told Ruth's story and kicked off the fundraising with a check from the family to thank Lazarex on behalf of their Mom and Dad. Since then they've worked the Lazarex booth at last October's NC fundraiser "Hogs 'n' Hens for Hope" and they sell T-shirts to raise money for Lazarex. They hope to one day have a fundraiser in Charlotte, NC.


The Thompsons are principals of Creative Employee Benefits, a life and health insurance agency, providing insurance benefits to companies since 1990. Of the benefits they sell, a cancer policy is the most popular benefit being offered in the workplace now. This benefit assists people with the astronomical cost relating to cancer. The policy covers many expenses that are not covered by major medical such as transportation or lodging during cancer treatment. For more information go to: or call Shay at 704 483-6161.



Team for Life Fundraising Efforts Successful


Lazarex's Team for Life has grown large enough to warrant a dedicated website In it you will find all things "Team for Life" - including some of our fundraising success stories from around the country. Here are some recent examples:


Paul and Dana Weiler raised $4,000 in their bike marathon; the Central Florida We're Wolves raised $3,275 in a run across the state of Florida; the Seattle Rock 'N' Roll marathon brought in more than $15,000.

You can also access Team for Life information from the Lazarex website at

WDW logoDuck and Waterfowl Calls Raise Money in North Carolina: It's All in the Family!

Young Liam Miller, 13, and his friends Wells Wallace and Jared Beasley (pictured left) love the outdoors and the art of duck and waterfowl calling. Along with Liam's mom, Erin Miller Van Gorder, (sister of Lazarex President Dana Dornsife and Communications Manager Karen Ambrogi) the boys are hosting "Calling for Hope" a duck and waterfowl calling contest for kids and adults on August 20th in their hometown of Wallace, NC. The entry fees will benefit Lazarex. All three of these young men are active members of Ducks Unlimited and will be helping out with the Ducks Unlimited NC State Convention. Another side of Liam Miller that many people don't realize is that Liam lost his father, Michael Miller, to pancreatic cancer in 2004 after a nearly 2 year battle. Liam's entire family has worked very hard to help people who are going through what they went through in their battle against cancer. Lazarex Cancer Foundation was formed in memory of Mike Miller. For more information you can contact Erin Miller-Van Gorder (910) 271-1967 or Allen/Julie Bliven (910) 524-8914.


Sponsors for this event are River Landing, Ducks Unlimited, Allen Bliven Calls, and Nutra Grape

MLBPAA and Lazarex Golf Fundraiser a Homerun!

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Lazarex Director of Development Susan Sappington, MLBPAA Director of Special Events Mike Groll, Lazarex Board Member and former MLB pitcher Kip Yaughn, and Lazarex President Dana Dornsife at the "Hope Starts Here" reception on May 16 in Fairfield.


Lazarex and the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association teamed up to build a bridge to hope on May 16 and 17 at the Green Valley Country Club in Fairfield, CA. Despite the rain it turned out to be a great day! Thirty-one teams, a scramble format, theme holes, silent auction, raffles and a spontaneous live auction netted $35,000, for Lazarex. Feedback from the players was tremendous regarding the course and their overall experience. We are thrilled because, in addition to the funds we raised, we met so many people that were new to the Lazarex mission.  Watch the Hope Starts Here recap video.
We also were featured in Diablo Magazine,
read about here: Lazarex Fundraiser golf tournament - Faces 2010
About Lazarex Cancer Foundation
Our Mission: We provide resources for cancer patients who have been told they have no other options, but who are not yet done with their journey in life and refuse to give up now.
Lazarex Cancer Foundation builds a bridge to hope, dignity and life for cancer patients and their families. We provide financial assistance to defray the costs associated with patient participation in FDA clinical trials. Additionally, we help patients navigate their clinical trial options and provide community education and outreach services. We believe that together we can change the face of cancer. To learn more, please contact us at 925.820.4517, toll-free at 877.866.9523, or visit us at

Please help us spread the word by sending this to a friend (or many!) who you think would be interested in Lazarex Cancer Foundation or one of our many events. Thanks!