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Stories of Hope

Share Your Story!

We want to hear your story to ensure others affected by cancer that they’re not alone. Start with your journey from diagnosis to recovery and how the HEADstrong Foundation has made an impact in your life. While it can be difficult to get personal, these details are what make your story unique.


Avery Moskowitz

I want to thank everyone at the HeadStrong foundation for granting our family money to pay of long standing bills.

Mandi Moore

September 11, 2014 my husband and I took our 14 month old Halston to the emergency room at Evans Army Hospital on Fort Carson in Colorado Springs, CO. He had been running a fever off & on, which we related to teething. After blood work, the doctor told us he believed he had Leukemia or Lymphoma. we were transfered to Children's Hospital of Colorado bright and early that morning. Halston was later diagnosed with AML M7 Leukemia.

Steve Brown

I’ve been an athlete my whole life. I played three sports as a kid, attended college on a soccer scholarship, and hung on the fringe of a pro career but never quite broke through. I grew up healthy and happy and remained that way as an adult. In the mid 1980s I discovered the world of multisport racing and was instantly hooked. My life got even better as a result of racing and the connections I made in the multisport community.

Bonnie Polla

My story started in June of 2014 when I felt I had a case of the flu. After seeing my family doctor and having blood work, they told me to go to the ER immediately. I was told there that I had leukemia and they could not treat me at Lehigh Valley Hospital and I would have to be transferred to U of Penn or Hershey. I chose Penn and think that they saved my life several times over the past 11 months. I had acute mylogenous leukemia.

Kevin Crowding

My story began in August of 2012... Like many other stories of blood cancers I had no symptoms leading up to the day I realized there was something wrong! I was playing softball when I began to have heart attack like pains in my chest! Upon doing tests doctors were able to identify that i was not having a heart attack but they discovered that I had a large grapefruit sized tumor located in my chest... I was eventually diagnosed on 9/11/12 with a form of B cell Lymphoma.

Courtney Crews

My story starts back in 2006, when my boyfriend Justin Whitaker was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at the end of our sophomore year of high school. Justin was a baseball player in wonderful health until that summer. Just at the end of our sophomore year after a few weeks of feeling a lump and discomfort

Sunita D Nasta MD FACP

I always knew I wanted to be a doctor: I loved science and my grandfather was a GP in a village clinic in India. I wanted to follow in his footsteps. I started undergrad with a plan to study immunology. But Medicine became real for me when one of my good friends developed Hodgkin lymphoma in

Alice Kelly

I lost 80 lbs and was in the best shape of my life when I noticed a small lump on my chest. Thinking it was just my bone, I didn’t pay it much attention. I began to get shortness of breath and went to the allergist twice before she recommended a chest x-Ray. I went

Alvin Tumblin Sr.

This week I have received financial assistance from the HEADstrong Foundation and I am so grateful for their help. They are a great nonprofit that improves the lives of so many people affected by cancer. I wish them the best and look forward to spreading the word about their impact. Lime Green all the way. Thank you.

Monica Fickenscher

My name is Monica Fickenscher. My world was rocked on July 15, 2014 when I was diagnosed with stage 2 triple positive breast cancer at the age 38. I was given a script for a mammogram in March and waited to have it done until July because I was “too busy”! Why a mammogram at 38

Darin Phillips II

My cancer story began when I was 16 years old. It was at that time when I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. After numerous chemotherapy and radiation treatments the cancer disappeared only to return a year later when I was 17 years old. Again I was receiving more treatments, but again my cancer vanished.

Nick Reed

Here is my story- I went to the ER for pneumonia on December 29th 2009 and I started with bloodwork and subsequently admitted to the hospital but I thought I was only getting checked up and possibly going home but that was not the case. I was put into a medically induced coma and I was

Gina Koehler

I was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia on May 25, 2010. I went to the Dr on my lunch hour from work, completely blindsided by this life-altering news. I had had a complete physical with lab work just 6 months earlier! But, I was “lucky” according to the oncologist because I was in a chronic

Hayley Annino

 I was healthy my whole entire life, I had never even been to the hospital until the day I was diagnosed. It was exactly a week after I turned 19 that I woke up in the morning knowing that something was not right. My gums were bleeding for no reason, and I was exhausted. A

Kathie Hurley

For some months I had been planning my trip to NJ to go on a cruise to Bermuda on May 3 with my 87 year old father, my six siblings with their spouses, and a few other family members and friends. My plan was to leave my home in Florida on April 23, 2014 take

Jason Handler

In early 2013, I was diagnosed with non-hodgkins lymphoma after I went to the hospital complaining that I was having difficulty breathing. After some scans and a biopsy, it was confirmed that the mass in my chest was indeed lymphoma. Over the next six months I completed eight rounds of R-EPOCH and was finally declared to be in remission.

Matthew Linehan

It all started on a family camping trip to Maine. I was five years old and I felt fine for the first couple of days. Around the third or fourth day I stated feeling sluggish and tired. Everything I was trying to do was getting harder like walking, eating and even staying awake. My parents

Trevor McNaught

On October 6th 2004 I was diagnosed with t-cell leukemia. One day after a soccer game I came how really tired and found it hard to breathe…

Kathryn O’Leary

When I was 3 years old my daddy was told he had testicular cancer. Unless it happen to you, I dont think anyone knows how scary it is to see a family member in the hospital in so much pain…

Brady Vandenberghe

My 18 year old son heard he had AML Leukemia last summer, July 2nd 2010. This was the summer before his senior year and he was looking forward to playing Varsity Football and Varsity Lacrosse at Eden Prairie High School, MN…

headstrongStories of Hope