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Cancer Support Community Honors Joan Lunden, Sandra Lee, Libby Mullen and AEG

Dear CSC Friends,

As I write this note to you, my heart is filled with gratitude for the amazing supporters who made last night’s Spring Celebration such a smashing success. Our annual event—along with your generosity—makes it possible for us to provide $50 million in free services to patients and their families. And, true to our mission, the patient’s voice took center stage. There were so many memorable moments that I want to share—and then I will ask you to use your social media to continue a movement of hope. Our evening started with our master of ceremonies, Jack Ford of CBS News, welcoming our first honoree, award-winning journalist Joan Lunden. We are so fortunate to count Joan as a longtime friend and fearless advocate. Last night she closed her remarks by reminding us that her father was a cancer surgeon—and how she dedicates her work to his memory—a reminder to all of us of those special people who inspire us to help make the world a better place.

Inspiration took the form of a special music video after Joan wowed the crowd. Oscar-nominated songwriter Sufjan Stevens dedicate a song on his new album to his mother and close friend who died of cancer. That video features three patients who benefited from our affiliate in Greater Philadelphia. Last night, our guests saw a special version of the song that incorporated the patients’ voices, and we are so thrilled to share it with you.

Our support from the entertainment industry kept going, as Emmy-winning chef and honoree Sandra Lee thanked her family and friends for being there after her cancer diagnosis. Sandra’s persistence and passion is evident in everything she does—and we are so grateful she uses her platform to share her story and advocate for others affected by cancer. Another ally that uses its platform for good is AEG, the world’s leading live sports and entertainment company and a longtime supporter of our efforts to ensure no one faces cancer alone. Steven A. Cohen, Executive Vice President of the Anschutz Corporation and Chief Strategy Officer of AEG, gave a wonderful speech about the company’s commitment to giving back to the hundreds of communities where they bring such joy through music and sports. Giving back personifies Libby Mullin, a health-care policy expert whom we honored for her leadership in establishing our thriving policy and grassroots initiatives. Libby’s remarks brought us full circle—as she shared stories that connected the personal experiences of family and friends diagnosed with cancer and how they are at the core of the work we do to change laws to make sure our health system serves every patient’s needs.

As these highlights illustrate, we all can be sources of hope for people living with a cancer diagnosis—which is why we selected the Paper Crane as our symbol for this year’s event. Inspired by Japanese tradition, the Paper Crane symbolizes hope and healing during challenging times.

The Paper Crane has taken flight (pun intended), as supporters from around the globe are making their own cranes and sharing their stories on social media. We want to keep the movement of hope going—so please view our instructions on how to construct a crane and make your social media a source of hope for your friends and family.

Thank you for all you do!


Kim Thiboldeaux