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Meghan's Message

by Cheryl M.

I walk for my daughter, Meghan, August 1, 1985 – October 22, 2007. I walk for YOUR DAUGHTER, TOO.

This is Meghan’s Story ….

I was born in Teaneck, NJ, on August 1, 1985. At age 2 1/2,  we went to live with my mother's parents. Two weeks later, my brother, Dan, was born. My parents divorced when I was 7-years-old. My brother and I attended Honis Elementary School and Dumont High School. I then attended Rutgers University in New Brunswick. While attending Rutgers, I was on the Dean’s List several times. I was also on the executive board of our Residential Life Organization for three years. All four years of college, I was a fundraiser and did volunteer work for Children with Cancer and Blood Disorders. Then, in junior year, I joined Alpha Chi Omega sorority and by senior year I was the vice president of Risk Management. I was accepted at Rutgers Graduate School of Education for my master's degree in Education. My future was bright. I was a substitute teacher for the Cresskill Board of Education for three years, a job that I really enjoyed. I was a happy Rutgers senior, finishing up with college, hanging out with my sorority sisters, roommates, and my brother, who followed me to Rutgers. I was looking forward to my college graduation and starting Rutgers Graduate School of Education in September.

That’s when our nightmare began....

In the end of February, they found a growth in Meghan’s left ovary. In March, we went to see a gynecological ecologist, who thought that because Meghan was only 21-years-old, it probably was not cancer. The recover time for the debulking surgery would be six weeks; hence, there was no way Meghan could have the operation and get back to Rutgers to take her finals and graduate. The doctor said that three weeks would not make a difference. He gave Meghan three weeks to finish school and take her finals so she would still be able to graduate. She finished school in two and a half weeks, with a 3.7 GPA. A few days before the surgery, we got the results of some blood tests and found out that Meghan had ovarian cancer.

On May 17, 2007, Meghan’s wish came true and she was able to walk to the podium, in a great deal of pain, to receive her diploma. Meghan spent most of her last six months in Memorial Sloan-Kettering hospital. Meghan passed away on October 22, 2007, one day short of six months from her first surgery. She was only 22-years-old. Her life had just begun. Her family and friends were at her side as my angel went to heaven.

Right before Meghan passed away, she was preparing to go the colleges and speak at sororities to spread the word about ovarian cancer. Now that she is gone, her family and friends are trying to do that for her. I operate a Web site, Meghan’s Message, at www.meghansmessage.com. We are also on facebook.com, myspace.com, and twitter.com. We participate in the Revlon Run/Walk for Women's Cancer and attend awareness events. This year, I attended the 12th Annual Ovarian Cancer Conference.

Awareness is key, because ovarian cancer does not have many survivors (78% of women with ovarian cancer are diagnosed late, when the chance for survival is low). We need you to get involved. Ovarian cancer is not uncommon. It is the fourth leading cause of cancer death among women. It kills more women than all the other reproductive cancers combined. It is the silent killer. We could not save Meghan, but maybe we can save someone else: a daughter, granddaughter, sister, wife, niece, cousin, or a friend.

Please help us. Join our cause and spread the word. Together we can save lives. For more information, please visit: www.meghansmessage.com

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