A Letter from Debbie Lewis

April 26th, 2011

Spring is in the air! It’s a season of rebirth and renewal, a time for a fresh start. Many of us started that journey almost two weeks ago at Emily’s Rainbow Run & Family Walk. We renewed our commitment to raising awareness of childhood cancer and the need for research funds to develop new treatments. More than 860 men, women and children participated in the 4 mile race, 2 mile run/walk and kids runs. Over 100 individuals volunteered their time that day and a wonderful group of committee members gave tirelessly over many months to guarantee the day was well planned and ran smoothly. Emily worked her magic on the weather again this year and I could feel her presence with us throughout the morning.

I considered the day a huge success when I saw the gathering of friends, families and strangers at the pre-race announcements, when 10-year old Andie Anderson was awarded the “Emily Lewis Young Philanthropist Award” from Rainbow Babies, walking towards the start of the 4-mile, feeling all the excitement in the air that made me want to cry with joy, the anticipation of the kids at the 2-mile starting line and the smiles on the children’s faces as they gave it their all running either the 100 yard dash or the ¼ mile. We, meaning Emily’s family, could not have asked for a more rewarding experience, but as you have heard me say many times, we need to find a cure for childhood cancer so that more children can celebrate future birthdays. The cure will only come through medical research.

With that being said, I am extremely proud to announce this year’s donation to Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital in memory of Emily Lewis will be ………….. $30,000!!! This is a whopping 100% increase of last year! WOW, SUPER, TREMENDOUS, ABOVE ALL EXPECTATIONS are a few ways to describe the outpouring of support from our sponsors, donors and participants.

Dr. John Letterio, Chief, Division of Pediatric Hematology / Oncology said “The support you have raised will help us inspire the next generation of scientists that will help us to win this fight...and we couldn't do this without your partnership. This is truly special, and please know that we will honor this through investment in young investigators that will bring new approaches to the clinic, who will proudly recognize this support as they communicate their results in peer reviewed publications and at national meetings where they represent our program, Rainbow and the Emily's Rainbow Fund.” Dr. Letterio will identify a recipient for 2011.

With humbled gratitude for all your support,