Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A Night in New York, Cassandra Rocking Cancer

May 19, 2012 was the grand finale of the Leukemia and Lymphoma's Society Man and Woman of the Year event.

Getting ready to rock blood cancers

It was wonderful evening, filled with hope and inspiration. 

The fourteen men and women who took on this challenge to make a difference in the fight against blood cancers, raised over $280,000.

Marc Paolicelli,, 2nd from left, Kelly Barr-Orr,3rd from right, Man & Woman of the Year

The boy and girl of the year stole the show as the candidates walked across the stage to receive a hand made gift made by Jack and Taylor.

I thought Cassandra looked absolutely stunning in her dress.  She told me she was nervous, but it never showed.

I am so proud of this young woman, for who she is in the world.

I am so grateful that she came into my life, that we are friends.

I don't know what the ripple effect will be of Cassandra's efforts.  Who else will be inspired by what she is doing?

Who else will see this as a call to action, to get involved, to make a difference?

Cassandra met the son of a current board member at the Man and Woman of the Year Kickoff event. Michael(16 years old) is a confirmed candidate for next years campaign. Ripple #1.

Cassandra, Ralph and Michael

I introduced Cassandra to Rick Peterson who was sitting at our table.  Rick, a former president of our chapter board of trustees was blown away by Cassandra.  His mouth dropped when I told him she was fifteen and a freshmen in high school.

Rick's daughter is a cancer survivor.  Allison was a girl of the year for our chapter.  She has graduated from high school and is now attending nursing school.

Rick told me he now wants Allison to run as a woman of the year candidate for the Rocky Mountain Chapter.after she finishes college. He had never thought about that as a possibility before for Allison.  Ripple #2.

What ripple effect will Cassandra have in the lives of Taylor and Jack?

What will it mean for my friend Brittany to have Cassandra in her life?
Cassandra and Brittany(11  year AML survivor)
I would be remiss if I didn't take a moment to recognize two people who contributed greatly to the richness of this journey for both Cassandra and myself.  Two incredibly compassionate and loving women.  The world needs your art.

Thanks to Kim Mailhot(A.K.A the Rock Fairy) for donating her time and talent and spreading love into a world that so needs her message.  "Love is the answer to every question."~Kim Mailhot

Thanks to Laurie Maves for donating her time and talent in creating a beautiful painting she made for Cassandra that was auctioned off at the gala.

Friends sharing a special moment

Ralph,  Cassandra, Laurie and Dustin
For me one of the things that I hoped would come out of this campaign would be in planting seeds of inspiration.     That other young people could see what was possible when you say yes to a challenge, when you say yes to your own life.

I hope that message is heard and understood by everyone.  Everyone can serve, everyone can make a difference.  You just have to take that first step.  Follow your heart.

I knew Cassandra already was living a life of service before I asked her to run as a woman of the year candidate for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Cassie, thanks so much for believing that we can create a world without cancer, for standing in that space of creation and possibility.  Thanks for your courage, your compassion, your kindness. The world needs this. The world needs you to be you!

 A heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.  How does it get any better than that?

"Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love."~Martin Luther King

1 comment:

  1. This brings tears of joy to my eyes, Ross. So many ripples and so many that probably haven't appeared yet. Wonderful work from you and your mazing young friend, Cassandra.
    You give me hope !
    Rock on, my Friend.