September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. A Father's Message.
My friend, Steve Paris' daughter Mary Elizabeth died last year. Cancer killed her. 12 years old. Can you imagine that pain? I attended her service and was struck by a number of things. I was amazed at the grace and dignity of the Paris family. In what is the worst time in their lives, they rose up and celebrated Mary Elizabeth and her impactful life. Steve, who I did not know well at the time, was fatherhood personified. He spoke about his cherished daughter, his amazingly strong wife and his other children with affection and bravery. What most impressed me about Steve's eulogy is that it was filled with emotion but not emotional. It was purposeful. It was educational. It was impactful. It made you laugh. It made you cry. It made you think. And at least in my case, it made me better appreciate a lot of things. So, for only the second time, this blog on CureNFwithJack is someone elses words. Someone elses call to action. Someone elses sorrow.
I will gladly trade you a shorter amount of words if you would just WATCH as much of the video as you want. I would only ask that you watch AT LEAST Steve's part. At the 22:30 mark he begins his eulogy and it runs until 45:45. I PROMISE you that you will learn more than you knew before about love, parenting, faith, anger, family, hope, action and most of all that we have work still to do. Pause it, rewind his words and listen again. If you are not moved then I don't know what to tell you. If you are, consider donating to Mary Elizabeth's page in her honor for the month of September and Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. $1, $2, $20, $100. Whatever. Just click here
Jack and Mary did not know each other well. The Burke and the Paris families, were not particularly close last year. What we do share is an understanding. As Steve says in his eulogy, if you have kids you were entered into a lottery. You can't put the ticket back if it is called. You have to keep it. It is my fervent hope that if your ticket has not been called, that it won't be called. If it has, seek support and help. In honor of ME go ahead and donate and click here. I will let one of the bravest men I know, take it from here. Steve, you did your daughter proud. Honor to know you.
CLICK ON THIS LINK TO WATCH THE VIDEO: Again, watch it all or if you go to 22:30 Mark, Steve's eulogy begins https://vimeo.com/138971608