Sunday October 6, 2013

Another 6th of the month, and another "Shannon" event behind us.  She's been gone now 21 months...

Yesterday's event was the annual Brains Together For A Cure walk.  In 2011, Shannon was there with us, in 2012 we walked in her memory, and in 2013 we walked to raise money and honor Shannon's wish to make a difference.

Seeing our faithful friends show up and support the cause warms our hearts.  For me, Dan, and Erin it helps us to know that people remember Shannon and that they continue to fight with us for a cure.  Erin's friends showed up, my friends showed up, Dan's friends showed up and yes, Shannon's friends showed up, too.

We heard yesterday that the research started by a grant from Brains Together For A Cure is now a 1.1 million dollar federally funded project.  A doctor who treated Shannon right here at the Mayo Clinic is pushing ahead to improve the science of radiation treatments and eventually, hopefully improve the standard course of treatment.

When I sometimes feel defeated, wondering how will things ever change, I will try to remember that story.  Local fundraising that supports local research means that all those $20 walk registrations added up to a $50,000 grant that turned into a $1.1 million research project.  That's why we walk, now.  Not only to remember, but to help make a difference.

After all of the "Shannon events" of the past few weeks, we wanted to do something for Erin yesterday, too.  What she really wanted was a chance to meet her new first cousin, once removed.  So, off to St. Paul to meet baby Oliver.

While we were there, baby Ollie slept peacefully in Erin's arms.  (To the slight chagrin of Ollie's parents who knew that sleeping the afternoon away meant staying up all night.  Again.)  Erin had never held a baby.  Up until now, Erin has been the "baby" of the O'Hara family.  But not anymore.

I'm sure we will be headed back to St. Paul again soon for some more cousin time, once removed...