Last week I shared the story of Shanna Kurtz, a 30-year-old woman in Texas who was diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma in 1999. She is battling the disease, and recently underwent a surgery to remove some tumors from her abdomen and her liver. She was in the hospital in Washington, DC, for more than a month before finally returning home on May 7.
Shortly after her return, abdominal pain sent her back to the hospital. She was good enough to email me to let me know she had suffered from a condition called illeus, which is when the intestines become paralyzed. She stayed in the hospital in Texas for a few days until finally coming home again on May 13. She said she’s focusing on getting stronger and gaining weight, but is frustrated by the setback after all her hard work to recover from her surgery.
You can check in on Shanna’s progress by reading her journal on the CaringBridge web site and email her some encouraging words at email@example.com. I know she’d really appreciate hearing from some folks in the meso community!
There was a fundraiser in her honor last weekend, and there’s an ongoing effort in Texas called “Cooking for the Cure” to help raise money for Shanna’s treatments. Cheri Travis, who is one of the organizers of Cooking for the Cure, reports Shanna is scheduled for another surgery in August, so fund raising efforts continue.
Cooking for a Cure was started by Cheri and two other friends who like cooking, and wanted to use their interests and talents in the kitchen to raise money for Shanna. They gather at one person’s house and prepare food, which they distribute in exchange for donations.
“It’s really spread by word of mouth of people who buy our food,” Cheri explained in an email to me. “Plus, we have fun doing it and helping raise funds for our friend.”
The group is based near Victoria, Texas, so if you live in that area, check out this unique project!
Cheri said there also is another fund raising benefit in Shanna’s honor planned for September 18 in Victoria. I’ll let you know the details when I have them.
In the meantime, if you live near Victoria and would like to purchase food from Cooking for the Cure, you can email Cheri at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or, if you would still like to make a donation to help with Shanna’s treatment, you can send it to:
Cooking for the Cure
17114 Eagle Hollow Drive
San Antonio, TX 78248